How I use a Cast Iron Skillet for Cooking Steak.
I am a recent convert to using a cast Iron skillet for cooking steak. I had always been concerned that using cast iron cookware would prove to be difficult and the clean up demanding. As I have since found out the opposite has turned out to be true, cleaning a well-seasoned cast iron skillet is actually one of life’s great pleasures.
How to Cook a Perfect Steak in a Cast Iron Skillet
Before you start it is vital that you have a well-seasoned cast iron skillet. If you have a new cast iron skillet then if necessary you should follow the manufacturer’s instructions for seasoning the skillet or if the skillet is pre-seasoned just go ahead and use straight away.
I would also recommend an instant read food thermometer so that the steak can be cooked exactly the way you like them.
The internal temperature of the steak should be:
125 – 30 F 52 – 55C for rare
130 – 140 F 55-60C for medium-rare
140 – 150 F 60-65C for medium
150 – 160 F 65 – 70C for medium to well
160 F 70 C plus for well done (if you must!)
Cook the Steak
I like a nice thick steak at least 1 inch thick, I like a boneless strip steak.
First of all, make sure the skillet is really hot before you start. The recommended temperature for the skillet is around 400F or 200C. You can heat the skillet in the oven.
Dry the outer surface of the steak. Allow the steak to get to room temperature.
Sprinkle the steak with salt.
Once the skillet is up to temperature, add a little oil to the pan.
Cook the steak in small batches, overcrowding the skillet with meat will cool the pan down too much.
I have two methods
First is the continual flipping method
I like this method best but it requires a lot of work and concentration, but it does produce a juicy steak with a perfectly tender inside and a nice deep dark crust on the outside.
Place the steak in the pan and keep flipping the steak every 30 seconds until a nice brown crust has formed. Regularly take the internal temperature of the steak and stop cooking once the internal temperature has reached the doneness you require.
If the steak is very thick then you may need to reduce the temperature of the skillet so the inside of the steak can cook perfectly.
Once done, remove the steak from the pan and rest the steak for at least 10 minutes, place under a tent of aluminium foil. While the steak is resting you can make a nice sauce or alternatively serve with a herb butter.
Second: In the oven method
This is were a cast iron skillet really comes into it’s own, as you can place them straight in the oven, without them coming to any harm.
Heat your oven to a moderate temperature 350–375°F or 180–190°C .
Fry the steak briefly until you have a nice deep brown crust outside. Then place in the oven until done. Keep checking the temperature.
Once done take out of the oven and rest the steak under a tent of aluminum foil for at least 10 minutes. Serve with a sauce or herb butter.