Everybody is talking about ribeye as the ultimate steak. And I know it’s a beautiful steak. But I am going to convince you that the flank steak is the better choice.
A flank steak does not look like much, but if you cook and cut it the right way, you will be amazed by this cut’s tenderness and flavour.
What is a flank steak
You can recognize a good steak by the dark red colour, and you can’t find a steak with a more intense red colour than a flank steak. That red colour tells you it’s a good cut of beef because of the haemoglobins that gives it its flavour.
Flank steak is a working muscle that’s cut from the flank of the cow hence the name. It’s got significant strands of muscles like a skirt steak, but it’s a lot thicker. It also has a good amount of intramuscular fat that gives it its tenderness and even more flavour.
Because of these strands, you wouldn’t consider it tender, and therefore, this cut of beef is mainly used in soups and stews. I will show you that you can eat flank steak as the tender and flavourful steak it deserves to be.
Why I prefer the flank steak over the ribeye
I already mentioned that the flank steak has more flavour because of the concentration of haemoglobins in the meat. But a flank steak is also a much cheaper cut than the ribeye. In Europe, it’s almost half the price, and in the US, the flank steak is a third of the cost of a ribeye. If you want to save some money, that makes for an easy choice.
How to prepare a flank steak
You don’t have to do much to cut a beautiful, well-marbled steak out of a complete flank steak. Just cut it into steaks and get rid of the silverskin. That’s it. An entire flank steak of about 1 kilo makes for 5 to 6 decent sized steaks.
But now you want to know how to cook it. I am going to show you how I cook the perfect flank steak with a reversed sear.
The best way to cook a flank steak, or any thicker cut steak, is to cook it with a reversed sear technique. You start with a grill with indirect heat somewhere around 120 to 140°C (248 to 284F). You place the flank steak on the grates and cook it to a core temperature of 48°C (118F). To make sure you take the steak off the grill on time, you use a digital thermometer.
Now you let the steak rest for a couple of minutes, and then you sear it off over direct heat to get a beautiful crust and a core temperature of around 52°C (126F).
When you look at this steak after it’s cooked, you notice it’s much darker than a ribeye. That’s because of the haemoglobins that makes this cut of beef more flavorful.
How to slice a flank steak
If you eat the steak like this, it’s going to be stringy and chewy. But if you slice it the right way, it’s just as tender as ribeye.
I told you about the long strands of muscles that make this cut of beef. If you slice this meat perpendicular to these strands, you’re cutting these muscles into smaller pieces, making it as tender as you need. We call this technique cutting against the grain, and it’s a great trick to know.
Now you know why I prefer the flank steak over the ribeye for flavour and price. And with these techniques, I hope I could convince you to try it for yourself.
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