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2023-07-08 09:24:27

From Rare to Well-Done - Meat Temperatures for Perfect Steaks

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

When it comes to taking the temperature of your beef .

Here's the deal .

There's a lot of practice that goes into it .

But there are a couple of simple steps you can follow to make sure you get it right .

Every time the first thing that we work on is touch .

Now , everyone's always saying you can touch your hand and then , you know , match it to the steak .

What does that really mean ?

Well , here's what happens when you start with a raw piece of meat , it's fairly stiff when you press on it , there's not a lot of give .

Then as the beef starts to heat up , it gets softer and softer .

And then as the temperature rises , it continues to get harder again .

So there are a range of textures that you can look for to figure out what temperature your beef is at more or less .

Let's take a look here .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

We have , first we have raw steak and I'm just going to push on that and you can see it's fairly stiff , there is some give on the surface , but once you get to the center , it's pretty solid .

Now moving on next to it we have a rare steak where the middle temperature of this steak is right around 115 F .

I'm going to press on that and you're going to notice pretty soft , pretty supple , it moves around .

It doesn't jump back from my touch .

Now , we have a medium rare steak where you're going to notice it's still pretty soft , but it comes back a little bit quicker .

So I press on that and you'll notice there's still some give , it's soft , but it tends to bounce back faster .

Then we have a medium steak , roughly 130 degrees .

A little bit higher , pressing on that .

You'll notice it's almost springy , comes right back to your finger .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

There's almost no sign that you pressed on it and then obviously it gets stiffer and stiffer .

So we're looking at a medium well , steak roughly 140 degrees or above pressing on that .

There's almost no give at all , but it's still got a little bit of texture to it .

And then finally a well done steak pretty solid .

Now , if you look at it on your hand , you've got this spot on your palm where it goes from soft , a little bit firmer , a little bit firmer all the way till it's very firm .

Those are sort of the range of textures that you're gonna find as you cook a steak .

Once you've cut into the steak , you're gonna notice some key distinctions .

Now , we're looking for two things , color and texture as far as texture goes when you cook from well done to rare , rare to well done .

There's a difference in muscle fibers with a rare steak .

You're gonna see long fibers .

There's a lot more moisture in there with a well done steak .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

Very short fibers , a lot less moisture .

So let's take a look at the rare steak .

We have a rare steak over here , bright red in the center .

You can still see there's a lot of moisture in there really long , almost indistinct fibers because you barely cooked the inside .

We're looking at around 100 and 15 degrees and rising .

Now , moving on to the next steak , we have a medium rare steak .

It's cooked a little bit longer over 100 and 20 degrees .

And now you'll start to see distinct muscle fibers , a little bit less moisture .

But still you're looking at bright red color .

100 and 20 means it's gonna be warm inside , not burning hot .

So a warm red center is kind of what you want for a good medium rare .

Moving on .

We have medium now , medium is kind of that middle ground .

That sort of will please everybody .

Even an avid medium rare steak lover can go with a medium steak .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

Now , that's because even though it's been cooked for longer , it still has a lot of moisture retained and you can see a little bit more distinct muscle fibers still has that bright red color .

A good medium steak over 130 degrees is going to have a hot red center .

Now , now we get into the danger zone .

Medium well , and well done .

A lot of people say never cook a steak this far .

But I say you can , if you do it carefully , let's look at the medium , well , shorter muscle fibers , a lot less moisture .

And we're looking at a distinct color change that's going from red to pinkish .

Now with a good medium .

Well , steak cooked over 100 and 40 degrees .

You're gonna have a hot pink center .

That's a perfect medium .

Well , it's still gonna be juicy .

It's still gonna be delicious .

It's just gonna be a little bit tighter when you chew it because less moisture , shorter muscle fibers .

And now finally we are at the well done steak .

Now , people typically think well done is bad .

People think well done means cooked through .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

It's a rock , you can't bite into it .

I say not true .

You can still have a good well done steak .

And as you can see , it's still pink .

Now , this steak has been cooked 100 and 50 degrees .

Plus , I mean , when I cut it , it was probably 100 and 70 and yet you still see lots of that pink color .

There's still moisture in there .

Not as much as a medium rare , but still plenty of moisture for a good juicy bite .

And as you can see really short and distinct muscle fibers .

So remember when it comes to cooking the perfect steak , whether it's a well done steak or a rare steak , knowing when to pull it off the heat is key .

Of course , I have a secret weapon and that is my thermo pen .

This is a digital thermometer .

No more guesswork .

It tells you exactly what temperature is happening inside that steak .

Any digital thermometer is good .

I prefer this one because it has never led me wrong .

So go cook some steak .

Let me know how it turns out for you .


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