Friday, January 13, 2012

“Steakage” – Changing the Shape of Your Steak Sandwich

Hot dogs and hamburgers are fine for the regular season, but when the playoffs and Super Bowl roll around, you need to upgrade the tailgate menu to something a little more special, like this “steakage” steak sandwich.

The name comes from the fact that the steak is being treated more like a sausage link. The problem with a traditional steak sandwich is it usually consists of a thin slice of beef, grilled and served on a thick sandwich roll. The steak to bread ratio is way off, and it’s very easy to overcook the meat.

Here, by cutting our steak into thick strips, we not only have a more geometrically appropriate piece of meat for our smaller bun, but we are able to get a nice sear on the outside without having to worry about the inside overcooking.

I used a gorgeous flat iron steak, and I really hope you can get one from your butcher, but if you can’t, this technique should work for other cuts of steak as well. NY strip, rib eye, top sirloin, and tenderloin could all be made to work. The key is something that can be cut into a large slab first, ideally about 1 1/2-inch thick, and then into strips about the same width, and as long as your bun.

I was very happy with these, and really enjoyed the little extra something the grilled mushrooms provided. The smoky salad added an earthy texture to the grilled beef, and it was all tied together nicely with the barbecue vinaigrette. To make this easy and versatile condiment, simply combine 3 parts barbecue sauce, with 2 parts vegetable oil, and 1 part cider vinegar.

So, if you were planning on splurging for your next backyard tailgate, and want to serve something a little out of the ordinary, then maybe give this whole “steakage” thing a try. By the way, it goes without saying that this would rock with cheese on it, but the American Kobe beef I was lucky enough to use was so exquisite that I didn’t want to cover it up. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 6 portions:
1 fully-trimmed flat iron steak
6 hot dog buns
1 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
mayonnaise and arugula leaves as needed

For the mushrooms salad:
8 oz brown clamshell mushrooms, grilled, separated
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

For the bbq vinaigrette:
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp cider vinegar


Anonymous said...

That is a tasty looking piece of flat iron steak. Well done sir! Well done!

Fardous said...

yummy hope try it soon thank u

Emily and Adam said...

Mind = blown. Well done. Can't wait until it's nice enough to grill!

Me.Eat.Food said...

I always wondered how to get a tender steak for sandwich meat, so the bun doesn't disintegrate in my hands when I take a bit and try to pull away the meat. Can't wait to try it!

Pantalone said...

Nice piece of meat!

Anonymous said...

chef John, i love your videos! i want to make this steak sandwich real soon. i told my grandchildren to bookmark your blog so they can learn how to cook better. i also enjoy your sense of humor! thank you!

Erixsson said...

This looks so amazing! you inspire me chef John, i have o make it.

Anonymous said...

great video but I wish I had a butcher in my neighborhood like yours...
the only downside to the sandwich is the bun...why settle for just a plain Wonder bread bun?..maybe a sough-dough or Kaiser bun. something a little more hearty, crunchy...thanks for your culinary ideas CJ...

Jeff said...

Oh. My. Goodness. There goes my diet! Good thing I just purchased some charcoal. Now I need to go get some steak. But looking at the weather I will need to wait. I can grill in snow. I can grill in sub-freezing temperatures. But it is really hard to grill in a downpour.

Eric Cinense said...

I should stop torturing myself by watching and actually make one

Anonymous said...

Chef John!! I made a mistake in watching that before I ate I am have to go get a steakage!!!

Monica said...

I never knew you could buy flat-iron Kobe beef. it would be tender anyway. must try this well not the Kobe but the steakage.

blogagog said...

That might be the prettiest piece of beef I've ever seen.

Vinny from Syracuse said...

Grilling outdoors while your relatives in Rochester freeze in foot-deep snow? Chef John has an evil side.

Anonymous said...


Clam... mushroom? Is it Nametake mushroom in Japanese? (I am not sure, but it looks like it on the video. By the way, I have never seen it on market in my area) If so, it must be slightly slimy. Well, when it is grilled, It may be less slimy. But anyway, as far as I remember, it is rather bland in flavor, isn't it? (But I do like Japanese Nametake conserve in a jar.)

What do you say about Shimeji mushroom, instead of Nametake, seasoned with butter and Japanese soy sauce?

Anonymous said...

Live in Austin

supposedly hipster in all modes

spoke with one of the butchers at Central Market, asked for this particular cut of meat..he just laughed

said this ain't SF in his Maine accent

"not only have we not carried flat iron but certainly not Kobe!

would have to be a special order

too expensive"

checked with Whole Foods on 6th and Lamar, the flagship WF store and headquarters of WF

"not happening" replied one of their butchers
"little requests for that cut, that brand of beef and too expensive"


Jack Mathers said...

John, you ARE a genius. But, you have insulted Philadelphians e everywhere. This sandwich does indeed look yummy, but you need another name. Steak sandwich is already taken. Just saying.

Brad Simpson said...

Philadelphians refer to their sandwiches as "cheesesteaks" which Chef John has not made, nor has he claimed to have made. So sorry, Jack, but you've got no leg to stand on.

I saw someone suggesting that those could be Japanese Nametake mushrooms. Does that sound familiar, Chef?

douglas e. walker said...

Love your videos. I've been a photographer for 30 plus years, and I can tell you there is nothing wrong with your shooting skills. We tune in to learn how to cook, not how to style food for the camera. Keep up the good work / no more apologising for bad lighting.. haha. DW