If you’re a steak lover, you know that the way you cut your meat is just as important as the way it’s cooked. One of the most important techniques to master is cutting against the grain on a flank steak.
This technique can make all the difference in the texture and tenderness of your steak. So, how do you do it?
What is the Grain?
Before we get into how to cut against the grain, let’s talk about what the grain is. The grain refers to the muscle fibers that run throughout the meat. On a flank steak, these fibers are long and visible, running from one end of the steak to the other.
Why Cut Against the Grain?
When you cut with the grain, you’re essentially cutting through those long muscle fibers, which can result in a Chewy and tough texture. Cutting against the grain means cutting across those fibers, which creates shorter pieces of meat that are much easier to chew.
How to Cut Against the Grain
Now that we understand why it’s important to cut against the grain let’s talk about how to do it properly.
- Step 1: Look at Your Meat – Before you start cutting your meat, take a close look at it. Identify which direction those long muscle fibers are running.
- Step 2: Slice Across – Once you’ve identified which direction those muscle fibers are running, take a sharp knife and slice across them.
You want to make sure your knife is sharp so that you can make clean cuts without shredding or tearing your meat.
- Step 3: Cut Thin Slices – When cutting against the grain on a flank steak or any other type of meat with visible muscle fibers, make sure to cut thin slices across those fibers. This will help ensure that each piece is tender and easy to chew.
Cutting against the grain is a simple technique that can make a big difference in the texture and tenderness of your steak. By taking the time to identify the direction of the grain and cutting across it, you’ll be rewarded with a deliciously tender and flavorful meal.
Tips for Cutting Steak Against the Grain
Now that we’ve gone over the basic steps for cutting against the grain let’s talk about some tips to help you get it just right.
- Use a Sharp Knife: A sharp knife makes all the difference when it comes to cutting against the grain. Dull knives can shred or tear your meat, which can result in an uneven texture.
- Cut Thin Slices: As we mentioned earlier, cutting thin slices across the grain is important for creating tender and easy-to-chew meat.
Try to keep your slices around ¼ inch thick.
- Let Your Meat Rest: Before you start slicing into your steak, let it rest for at least five minutes. This will help redistribute any juices that have accumulated during cooking, making your meat more tender and flavorful.
Cutting against the grain on a flank steak is a simple technique that can make a big difference in the texture and tenderness of your meat. By taking the time to identify which direction those muscle fibers are running and slicing across them, you’ll be rewarded with a deliciously tender and flavorful meal.
Remember to use a sharp knife, cut thin slices, and let your meat rest before serving. Happy cooking!