It seems everyone knows how they want their steak. The only problem is, I can’t guarantee that it’ll turn out that way when I’m in charge of the BBQ. If you’re like me, you seem to end up at two extremes: too rare, or too well done. More often than not, erring on the side of caution, my grilled beef is so brown that a dog would turn it down and so tough that it could pass as jerky.
Finally my and your “posing as a seasoned King of the Grill” days are over! We don’t have to fake knowing what we’re doing anymore. We can get the lingo down: blue, rare, medium rare, medium, medium well, and well done. We can better serve our guests with our mastered knowledge of the steak doneness spectrum and deliver exactly what they prefer (while avoiding the temptation of getting people to be impressed with us). And our head knowledge can become practical and hands on with the finger test. Note that with the finger test, we are lightly joining the tip of our thumb with the tip of the desired finger. We’re not pinching with any force, but basically observing the feeling of the muscle at the base of our thumb (adductor pollicis) as we move our thumb towards or away from our palm. Now, we can do our best to gauge doneness by touch without resorting to hacking up the steaks to get an internal visual (this, as you know, wastes precious juices). And when that steak hits the plate, (just picture and smell it now!) it is exactly as expected – to the delight of those you are serving!
Hope you find this doneness cheat sheet helpful! To download or print, click here!
Happy Steak Doneness Practicing and Happy ManHacking!
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