If I were going to grill my father a steak for Father’s Day, I would look for some expert advice to brush up on types of steaks and grilling techniques before jumping into the recipe search. Fortunately, a perk of my job is that I get to rifle through The Times’ archives, and they offer plenty of guidance.
Along with meat purchasing considerations, there are tips on how to check for doneness, insider tips for alternative cuts that are just as flavorful — if not more so — than rib-eye but a bit easier on the budget and simple tips for grilling. We’ve got your grilling basics covered, as well as some finer points to achieve perfect results. With my research done, I would then look to The Times’ recipe database.
The rib-eye is hailed as one of the best steaks, if not the best for grilling, so I would have to consider one of these recipes. Grilled rib-eye with pistachio gremolata and charred balsamic broccolini is for true devotees: It calls for a 3-inch-thick steak (have your butcher cut it for you). It also makes meal-planning a cinch: The “sauce” and vegetable preparation are mapped out along with the meat so everything is ready to serve at the same time. Perfect grilled steak calls for more conventionally sized steaks and suggests a less-than-conventional trick to prevent the meat from sticking to the grill grate. Kalbi rib-eye steaks beg for a side with some tang to balance the robust Asian flavors and the richness of the meat.
Rib-eye is great, but for some, nothing beats a Porterhouse, also known as a T-bone steak. Prepared with a ketchup-spiked red wine sauce, it is a barbecue lover’s delight.
Full of meaty flavor, skirt steak is a bit less expensive than rib-eye or a Porterhouse and grills up more quickly. It takes well to a sauce with oomph such as chimichurri or marjoram and lime salsa. Hanger steak, here seasoned with Sichuan peppercorns and 3 cups of chiles, also packs a lot of meaty flavor (and some heat) for not a lot of money. Wrapping hoisin-marinated steak in spring onion pancakes (sirloin, another popular lower-cost steak, is used here) seems like a party on a plate.
My father liked things simple. He would probably opt for a perfectly grilled rib-eye, Porterhouse or hanger steak, all sans sauce. I wish he were still alive so I could cook him a steak he would love and watch him savor it. Instead, I will have to settle for making one to honor his memory and eating it myself. Happy Father’s Day.