Flank steak is a popular cut of meat, known for its rich flavor and tender texture. However, it can be tough if not cooked properly.

Many people wonder if tenderizing the flank steak before marinating is necessary to achieve the desired tenderness. In this article, we’ll explore whether or not it’s necessary to tenderize flank steak before marinating.

What is Tenderizing?

Tenderizing is a process that breaks down the connective tissues in meat, making it more tender. There are several ways to tenderize meat, including pounding, marinating in an acidic liquid, using a meat mallet or fork, or using a commercial meat tenderizer.

What is Flank Steak?

Flank steak comes from the abdominal muscles of the cow and is a lean cut of meat with long muscle fibers. It’s important to note that this cut of beef has less fat compared to other cuts like ribeye or sirloin.

Tenderizing Flank Steak Before Marinating

While it’s not necessary to tenderize flank steak before marinating, it can help achieve a more tender texture. Since flank steak has long muscle fibers that can make it Chewy when cooked, tenderizing can help break down those fibers and make it easier to chew.

There are several ways to tenderize flank steak before marinating. One way is to use a meat mallet or fork to create small punctures in the meat. This will help break down the connective tissues and make the marinade penetrate deeper into the meat.

Another way is to use a commercial meat tenderizer. These contain enzymes that break down the proteins in the meat and make it more tender. However, be careful not to overdo it as these enzymes can also turn the meat mushy if left for too long.

Marinade Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

The Marinating Process

Marinating is a process of soaking meat in a flavorful liquid for a period of time. The marinade can be made with various ingredients like vinegar, citrus juice, herbs, and spices. The purpose of marinating is to add flavor to the meat and tenderize it.

To marinate flank steak, place it in a resealable plastic bag or shallow dish with the marinade. Make sure the meat is fully coated and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to overnight. The longer you marinate the meat, the more flavorful it will be.

The Verdict: Should You Tenderize Flank Steak Before Marinating?

While it’s not necessary to tenderize flank steak before marinating, it can help achieve a more tender texture. If you’re short on time or don’t have a meat tenderizer, you can still achieve great results by simply marinating the steak for a longer period of time.

In conclusion, tenderizing flank steak before marinating is optional but highly recommended if you want a more tender texture. However, make sure not to overdo it as too much tenderizing can turn the meat mushy. With the right marinade recipe and proper cooking technique, your flank steak will be juicy and delicious every time!