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"It Tastes Like Steak"
April 11, 2013 12:31 PM   Subscribe

"Steak is the defining mouthful of our time" (A.A. Gill, for Vanity Fair)
posted by box (102 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
It's been something like 25 years since I so much as had a bite of a steak. I never really cared for the taste. Don't miss it one bit.
posted by Thorzdad at 12:38 PM on April 11, 2013


A lot of men do something called mantling—that is to lean over the plate, surround it with their arms just for a second. It’s body language that comes from a time before speech.

Who does this?
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 12:40 PM on April 11, 2013 [28 favorites]


Nobody ever.
posted by The Whelk at 12:41 PM on April 11, 2013 [15 favorites]


I love a good steak. Seared, on a white-hot (literally) cast-iron pan, with mushroom pan sauce. Or chopped up with capers and onions, raw.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:43 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't think I'd miss it either, and I eat plenty of meat. Beef, even really good beef, is pretty bland in comparison with a lot of other meats. Even in my favourite setting, a good stew, I'd rather have lamb or rabbit.
posted by pipeski at 12:44 PM on April 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


I do something called drooling - leaning over the plate, savoring the smell just for a second. It's body language that come from a time before humans.
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:44 PM on April 11, 2013 [11 favorites]


A.A. Gill: pretty much wrong on everything, all the time.

Even if he hadn't shot that chimp because he "wanted to feel what it was like to kill somebody", or rubbished the eminent classicist Mary Beard on account of her gender, this article would still be a steaming pile of horseshit. If any foodstuffs define our time, it's the plastic wrapped cack of fast food, or the molecular gastronomic works of California.
posted by The River Ivel at 12:44 PM on April 11, 2013 [11 favorites]


Who does this?

I never did, but I plan to do this from here on out before every meal.
posted by Renoroc at 12:44 PM on April 11, 2013 [11 favorites]


Who does this?

Ron Swanson
posted by Thorzdad at 12:44 PM on April 11, 2013 [7 favorites]


Who does this?

Pretty much everyone eating in correctional facilities, minus the "for just a second" part.
posted by mr. digits at 12:49 PM on April 11, 2013 [9 favorites]


Thorzdad: “It's been something like 25 years since I so much as had a bite of a steak. I never really cared for the taste. Don't miss it one bit.”

You, sir, are lucky. Lucky, lucky, lucky. And I certainly wish I felt the same way.
posted by koeselitz at 12:49 PM on April 11, 2013


Of course the kind of steaks he's talking about are not to be had at the Sizzler or sourced yourself from Safeway. And it's the food of our time for the people who matter to him, the economic winners of today -- including in particular the top of the economic pyramid in what we still for some reason call the developing world.

If that Masai tribesman had understood what A. A. Gill actually represents one imagines he might well have speared him instead of the cow.
posted by George_Spiggott at 12:50 PM on April 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


You can get a good sear by cooking on charcoal.
And I do mean "on."
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:51 PM on April 11, 2013


A good cut of Grass fed localism beef cooked very rare with a bit of salt and pepper is a nice treat a few times a year, but beef is pretty boring tbh.

Now if we were talking about Duck, nature's most perfect food, that would be different.
posted by The Whelk at 12:51 PM on April 11, 2013 [7 favorites]


Who does this?

I never did, but I plan to do this from here on out before every meal.


I pretty much want to have a Metafilter Mantling Meet-up at Chicago's finest (or even not finest) steakhouses right now and not just because I'm a narcissistic fan of alliteration.

That said, I eat meat, I love steak, and I am not typically bothered by seeing raw meat. (I used to work for a butcher, so this is a good thing.) But that steak in the shape of the continental United States is really disgusting to me.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:51 PM on April 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


Define "our".
posted by seemoreglass at 12:56 PM on April 11, 2013


The nation of Argentina (and Uruguay) hate you people right now. A beautifully cooked piece of rare beef is a spectacular treat indeed.

The assertion that steak is the defining (high end) foodstuff of our time is dramatically wrong however being that the prime gastronomic symbol of the age is a pair of surgical tweezers, the better to mince microgreens into shape with by a thinly bearded barely post pubescent chef with delusions of artistry.
posted by Keith Talent at 12:58 PM on April 11, 2013


Oh man do I love steak.

Some vegan friends of ours came over for dinner recently and since they were brought up with manners, they don't drink alcohol, and they didn't want to come empty-handed, they brought us some really good quality grass-fed frozen steaks. I have no idea why they did that, probably for the humor value, but I can't wait to thaw 'em and grill 'em. They are the best vegan friends ever.

I'm of the mind that steak should be steak flavored. Teriyaki and other marinades are fine but that's a whole 'nother thing. If I want a steak then really nothing but kosher salt and maybe a small rub of oil to help form a crust need to touch it before it goes on the grill. Add a baked potato, some roasted asparagus and a dry martini and you've got yourself a dinner.

Oh man do I love steak.
posted by bondcliff at 12:59 PM on April 11, 2013 [11 favorites]


It's been something like 25 years since I so much as had a bite of a steak. I never really cared for the taste. Don't miss it one bit.

Same here. Well, not 25 years, but about 12 years now (since the Mad Cow outbreak in Europe when they were practically burning giant heaps of diseased cows in the streets). I used to love the stuff though, but I don't miss it in the slightest now.

After quitting for a year or so, you suddenly realize where all those uncomfortable stomach cramps and digestive problems you've had your whole life were actually coming from, and pretty soon, even the smell of the stuff is a little nauseating. At least, that was my experience with it. Yuck.
posted by saulgoodman at 1:00 PM on April 11, 2013


Oh man do I love steak.

Did you just mantle that paragraph?
posted by darksasami at 1:02 PM on April 11, 2013 [20 favorites]


Did you just mantle that paragraph?

Unghg.
posted by bondcliff at 1:03 PM on April 11, 2013 [4 favorites]


I feel the age of steak has passed, it was the mouthful of the late 20th century but new trends have surpassed beef steak at this point.
posted by chaz at 1:04 PM on April 11, 2013



bondcliff
Don't think I'm chastising you or trying to pick a fight, but while a martini seems appropriate in almost any circumstance, a nice Caesar before a steak dinner is the perfect cocktail. 1 oz. beef stock, 2 oz. Clammatto (fancy assed handmade artisan stuff if you are a particular fan of hipster bartenders, shit from a tin if not,) 2 oz. vodka, fresh ground horseradish, Worcestershire, squeeze of lemon, over ice.

Bring on the steaks.
posted by Keith Talent at 1:05 PM on April 11, 2013 [6 favorites]


I'm perfectly happy being omnivorous, and I do occassionally eat steak and enjoy it -- but I could not make it past the third paragraph without throwing up in my mouth a little.

Why? Oh, WHY?
posted by blurker at 1:07 PM on April 11, 2013


You want a guy in a checked shirt with his sleeves rolled up forking and tonging your T-bone.

I don't know what the hell you're here to do but I'm just here to eat dinner.
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 1:12 PM on April 11, 2013 [18 favorites]


Marinades are, of course, for when you have a less flavorful or tougher cut of beef, I can do amazing things with a skirt steak, a mustard marinade, and a red onion relish* but that's not the kind of steak the author is talking about.

*serve with arugala salad.
posted by The Whelk at 1:12 PM on April 11, 2013 [4 favorites]


I have had the Wagyu at Old Homestead. I was drunk enough to suggest going to Old Homestead to get it but too drunk to appreciate it. Maybe I'll go back next suitably apocalyptic event.

I keep an old iPhone around because it has all my steak pictures. Porterhouse from The Palm, The Palm West,The Palm Too (The Palm is my spot). Steak Au Poivre from Smith & Wollensky. A giant sizzling porterhouse drenched with butter from Ruth's Chris. Dozens of steaks I cooked myself in my set of cast iron steak cookin' pans, 3 in thick Hereford porterhouses, American Kobe Ribeyes.

WTF MetaFilter, yesterday you made me want $4 Rotisserie chicken today you are making me want a $50 steak.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:21 PM on April 11, 2013 [10 favorites]


Seared, on a white-hot (literally) cast-iron pan

Yeah, no.
posted by Mapes at 1:22 PM on April 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


"I call this turf 'n' turf. It's a 16-ounce T-bone and a 24-ounce porterhouse. Also, whisky and a cigar. I am going to consume all of this at once because I am a free American."
posted by stenseng at 1:23 PM on April 11, 2013 [6 favorites]


I don't know what the hell you're here to do

Mantle plates of beans.
posted by theredpen at 1:26 PM on April 11, 2013


Mapes: Yeah, no.

I'm confused. Are you saying that the cast-iron pan I overheated to the point of turning the protective seasoning layer white wasn't actually that color? What color was it, when you were in my house? The steak was pretty good, even though the pan was too hot to handle and I had to scour and re-season it. Did you happen to try some, in my kitchen?
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:26 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


My Masai dinner was, incidentally, the only steak a vegetarian could ethically eat; no animals were killed.

Nooooo, A.A. Gill. Please please don't rhapsodize about shit you don't actually know about. Slightly sexualized descriptions of drinking cows blood: OK. Anything having to do with the vegetarian ethics: Not OK.
posted by muddgirl at 1:28 PM on April 11, 2013


It wouldn't have been white-hot. You could definitely cook the seasoning down to ash, but the pan wasn't glowing white.
posted by blue t-shirt at 1:29 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Don't think I'm chastising you or trying to pick a fight, but while a martini seems appropriate in almost any circumstance, a nice Caesar before a steak dinner is the perfect cocktail.

I'm also not picking a fight, but I have to disagree with you there. A nice, bracing gin martini awakens the palate in preparation for a good steak.

With the steak, of course, you'll want wine. The common consensus is either a Bordeaux, or a Côtes du Rhône, but I've recently quite enjoyed this Cabernet-Syrah from Midi. Very bold, a big mouth feel, and a lot of bang for the buck. In fact, if I can find another bottle, this may be what I'm doing on Saturday.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:29 PM on April 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh, and if you ever find yourself on Route 9 in Framingham, MA and recognize Ken's Steak House from the salad dressing and think it might be a good idea to eat there I can tell you right now that that's not a very good idea unless you are over 70 and are seeking out the early bird specials.

A nice, bracing gin martini awakens the palate in preparation for a good steak.

I was going to specify a "gin" martini but then I realized that I didn't need to because there is no other kind of martini.
posted by bondcliff at 1:29 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


"What does steak say to us and about us? Well, it’s manly. ... Steaks even come with their own butch utensils. It’s more like engineering or Lego than cooking. It’s boy stuff."

And I'm done. I have a lot of nostalgia and appreciation for steak and kind of liked the introduction discussing the Masai, but I can't really continue reading after such gratuitous re-enforcement of harmful gender stereotypes.
posted by R343L at 1:30 PM on April 11, 2013 [5 favorites]


Mine never get white hot, maybe I got inferior pans or an inferior stove. I flick water into them and if the water flashes to steam they are hot enough.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:30 PM on April 11, 2013


As a matter of perspective my takeaway from this is that A.A. Gill ate cow dung and urine with a blood chaser.
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:32 PM on April 11, 2013


The stereotyping and broad pronouncements about "our time" are worthless, but the idea that cow's blood literally tastes like pure essence-of-steak is still interesting, even if I have no inclination whatsoever to test it.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:32 PM on April 11, 2013


I am a steak and martini girl. As often as possible.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:33 PM on April 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


Not even red hot - just hot enough to burn the seasoning out of the skillet. Which is pretty damn hot.
posted by wotsac at 1:34 PM on April 11, 2013


The radiant heat alone from white hot iron would almost certainly burn your house down.
posted by 2bucksplus at 1:34 PM on April 11, 2013 [5 favorites]


Which I guess makes eating red meat more exciting and dangerous.
posted by 2bucksplus at 1:35 PM on April 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


We need a mantling meet up.
posted by Artw at 1:37 PM on April 11, 2013




A Manly Manifestly Manly Mantling Metafilter Meet-up
posted by The Whelk at 1:38 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Gill gives and hints at numbers—one a half billion cows!—without any attempt to give them meaning, which just goes to show that he's much more interested in talking than in saying anything. If his figures are correct, human population growth actually outstrips domestic cattle, and by a decent clip. Not to mention the far steeper population growth of another widely consumed meat [HuffPo with sources]—almost quintupling since 1960.

But even if his premise does have value, the article doesn't really go anywhere. Some vague and scripted gestures toward the possibility of overreaching our land resources—to give the piece a little shape, at least—and a lot of drooling, posturing, and dull attempts at defining "our time." (Luckily, there is nothing to suggest that the future will allow Gill much of a say. I at least will hope.)

After quitting for a year or so, you suddenly realize where all those uncomfortable stomach cramps and digestive problems you've had your whole life were actually coming from, and pretty soon, even the smell of the stuff is a little nauseating. At least, that was my experience with it. Yuck.

I feel the same—about steak, but also about cheese. I definitely have a weaker stomach than most, but cutting these two out has significantly improved my life away from the table. And considering that's most of it, I'm ever thankful.
posted by mcoo at 1:39 PM on April 11, 2013


A.A. Gill: pretty much wrong on everything, all the time.

I don't know, I think this piece is a pretty reasonable if weirdly uncritical evocation of the macho-foodie meat mentality which does seem to me to be a thing that is actually happening in food culture recently. There's a better essay — more critical and more analytic — waiting to be written about it, about the way American mass-market foodieism in the '90s looked to Greens or Chez Panisse but the '00s/teens have instead wrapped everything in bacon, re-sanctifying meat as a hedonic necessity rather than questioning its ethics or its environmental impact. It could be connected to a broader rise of bro culture and a masculinity backlash in the last decade or so. Gill is right there in the middle of it, invested in it to the hilt, and certainly not reporting on it with a critical eye, but that's not exactly the same as being wrong.
posted by RogerB at 1:40 PM on April 11, 2013


well also most people I know switched to All Steaks/Bacon Salads/Cured Meat and Cheese Platters all the time cause they where low-carbing and trying to avoid Wheat (and wheat by-products) and the foul, wretched dirt apple, scourge of the seven lands, most low and treacherous of all starches. Oh we will not speak it's name, we will not give it that satisfaction.
posted by The Whelk at 1:42 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


A Manly Manifestly Manly Mantling Metafilter Meet-up

At Mickey Mantle's Steakhouse?
posted by Kabanos at 1:45 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I was going to specify a "gin" martini but then I realized that I didn't need to because there is no other kind of martini.

I wholly agree with you, but occasionally I find it necessary to clarify myself for the benefit of people who weren't brought up right.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:50 PM on April 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


The hanger steak is the cow's best kept secret (it used to be called the Butcher' Cut because butchers would save it for themselves). There is only one per cow but it is usually much cheaper than a ribeye and is very flavorful. It is best cooked to rare (or on the rare side of medium-rare) and is perfect for "ghetto sous-vide" . (see also my previous post).
posted by AceRock at 1:50 PM on April 11, 2013


Steak houses used to be leathery, clubbable lounges with cartoons of dead customers on the walls and faux Victorian paintings of obese cattle, staffed by ancient, permanently enraged waiters with faces as livid as well-hung sirloin and aprons that went from nipple to ankle.

This! This is where I want to go. Where do I find this restaurant, please?
posted by enn at 1:51 PM on April 11, 2013


Mid-Town, Wall street area.
posted by The Whelk at 1:54 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]




This! This is where I want to go. Where do I find this restaurant, please?
Indianapolis
posted by Thorzdad at 1:58 PM on April 11, 2013


Steak houses used to be leathery, clubbable lounges with cartoons of dead customers on the walls and faux Victorian paintings of obese cattle, staffed by ancient, permanently enraged waiters with faces as livid as well-hung sirloin and aprons that went from nipple to ankle.

As usual I am going to reccomend The Palm, which is well known for the cartoons on the walls.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:58 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I love me some steak, too. I've had amazing expensive steak at Peter Luger but I've also had fine inexpensive ones at brazilian and Argentinian places. Now I'm hungry. Thanks a lot.
posted by jonmc at 2:01 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Maybe mantling will become the new planking.
posted by Kabanos at 2:01 PM on April 11, 2013


God dammit, people, I just realized I committed myself to going out for dinner tonight at a place that doesn't serve steak. Or rotisserie chicken.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 2:03 PM on April 11, 2013 [5 favorites]


Kabanos: "Maybe mantling will become the new planking."

The internet, being a dull and iterative thing, will inevitably combine the two and call it... I don't know, plankling or mankling.
posted by boo_radley at 2:04 PM on April 11, 2013


I used to love red meat, then I got gout. As it turns out, having you big toe hurt so much you want to cut it off, is great motivation for dieting. After about 8 months of nothing but chicken and turkey, I don't crave it anymore. It's very much like giving up sugar, after a while anything with sugar tastes way too sweet.
posted by doctor_negative at 2:06 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


All of you guys rhapsodizing about steak...did you not read the same article I did? Because after reading that, I couldn't care less about steak, but am utterly possessed by a craving for hot steer's blood. Oh, would that southern California had more of a Masai presence.
posted by infinitywaltz at 2:07 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


utterly possessed by a craving for hot steer's blood

I have to admit, I glossed over the steer's blood drinking and spend too much time gazing lovingly at the ccompanying photos
posted by Ad hominem at 2:09 PM on April 11, 2013


I ate stake the day Thatcher died, it tasted like... victory.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:13 PM on April 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


I don't know as much about this author as some of you apparently do, but I was kinda disappointed, considering how much I agree with the premise in the title and have read some really interesting things from Vanity Fair. The whole "steak is and always will be the food of manly American men" angle was a bit shallow after dropping the "one cow for every 3 Americans" factoid.
posted by antonymous at 2:18 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yeah it made me want to try warm steer's blood.

I don't really understand the thing about Steak being a USA thing though? So there were cows grown for meat before WWII but the steak cuts were what all siphoned off for the Aristocracy?

Or they used those cuts differently prior to WWII?

And what about the the whole Argentine Steak Tradition? "Cows were first brought to Argentina in 1536 by Spanish Conquistadors. "- wikipedia

How did the Europeans eat their beef?

Actually what about the Florence Tradition of :
" bistecca alla fiorentina, "florentine steak", often known outside Tuscany simply as a fiorentina (Florentine), was born. Fanfani's dictionary of 1863 describes bistecca alla fiorentina as a neologism dating from 1823, "
posted by mary8nne at 2:23 PM on April 11, 2013


A lot of men do something called mantling—that is to lean over the plate, surround it with their arms just for a second. It’s body language that comes from a time before speech.

Who does this?


Designated hitters?
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 2:29 PM on April 11, 2013 [4 favorites]


So really what happened was that during the post-WWII boom and prosperity in the USA (because it wasn't really effected by the war - it had a headstart) the Steak which had long been eaten in Europe by the relatively wealthy became "popularised" and cheap.
posted by mary8nne at 2:32 PM on April 11, 2013


Yeah, dishes and methods that used cheaper cuts, ground, or lengthen out beef used to be much more popular.
posted by The Whelk at 2:36 PM on April 11, 2013


boo_radley: "The internet, being a dull and iterative thing, will inevitably combine the two and call it... I don't know, plankling or mankling."

Mankling sounds like people posting surreptitious shots of men flashing a bit of ankle.
With perhaps a touch of hair peeking out.
Whew! Is it warm in here? /fans_self
posted by ApathyGirl at 3:02 PM on April 11, 2013


the better to mince microgreens into shape with by a thinly bearded barely post pubescent chef

Pffft, old-timer.
posted by mykescipark at 3:07 PM on April 11, 2013


From TFA:

Smart cities are being stampeded by herds of restaurants devoted to cows’ arses.

I don't think this guy actually understands what a steak is.
posted by charlie don't surf at 3:26 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


God damn, metafilter is making me hungry today.

I was a vegetarian for 18 years, and I didn't miss steak one bit. But the first meat I ate after deciding to eat meat again was steak, and it was glorious. It was like welcoming home an old friend.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 3:45 PM on April 11, 2013


You don’t want some twiddly-accented, jus-dribbling, foam-flicking chef mincing about with your meat. You want a guy in a checked shirt with his sleeves rolled up forking and tonging your T-bone.

Author must be a man, as he makes a lot of assumptions about me. I would definitely prefer the mincer.
posted by mrgrimm at 4:03 PM on April 11, 2013


Dinner last night was steak.
Dinner tonight is steak.
Dinner tomorrow night is steak.

I too get irritated at the "steaks are manly man food for guys who GRILL they don't COOK" silliness and had trouble getting past that in the article. Growing up, there were lots of dinners where us kids would get one cheap, simple meal like spaghetti, and my mom would treat herself to a filet mignon or a T-bone steak at the head of the table. It wasn't about being manly. To me, eating delicious steak was something adults did.

On hindsight, I think my mom told us that just so she wouldn't have to buy us all filet mignons.
posted by subject_verb_remainder at 4:35 PM on April 11, 2013 [3 favorites]




Beautiful!
posted by snsranch at 4:56 PM on April 11, 2013


Just so we can put the "white hot" business to rest, here's a chart of iron temperature by color. White hot would be in excess of 2500F, at which point the iron would liquefy.

I have actually seen a steak cooked on a dull-red iron surface. Not a pan -- although you can get a pan that hot over a gas hob -- but the top of an catalytic woodstove going balls-out. (Probably unnecessary: alcohol was involved in this particular culinary experiment.) I don't really recommend it, though. It seemed to give you basically the same degree of doneness you'd get by just waving a propane torch over the meat until the outside blackened. Maybe if you had already cooked the inside sous vide or something...
posted by Kadin2048 at 5:28 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I only very rarely eat beef anymore, and steak is pretty far down on the list of ways I consume it. Pan grilled bits of cheap steak, sliced at an angle, dark purple in the middle, wrapped in a tortilla? Good. Burger? Great. Big chunk of steak? Kind of boring. A little tiresome towards the end.

Give me pork, or like the Whelk, duck, any day. More fun, more flavor. Steak has this iconic status, like above, just salt, maybe a little black pepper, and you're done. Pork chops? Go to town on that stuff! Brine them, or bread them, or whatever. Pork doesn't have the dogma attached that beef does.

On the other hand, when I do eat a steak, I eat the whole damn thing. Beef fat is delicious. Sure, I might end up feeling a touch queasy, but ooh, that's good eating.
posted by Ghidorah at 6:12 PM on April 11, 2013


A lot of men do something called mantling—that is to lean over the plate, surround it with their arms just for a second. It’s body language that comes from a time before speech.

The writer forgot the best part: after circling the plate, the man must throw his head back and roar loudly. The roar is primary. How else will other carnivores know that he has conquered and to keep away from his dinner?

The decibel levels in certain steakhouses can be heard 2/3 of the way down the block.

Frankly, the steak doesn't interest me as much as the juice left in the pan. I've always been partial to dipping a piece of fresh French bread into the pan after the steak is done.
posted by BlueHorse at 7:09 PM on April 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


Frankly, the steak doesn't interest me as much as the juice left in the pan. I've always been partial to dipping a piece of fresh French bread into the pan after the steak is done.

You're doing something wrong. The juices are supposed to stay in the meat, not pour out onto the pan or your plate. Maybe you're not searing the steak enough. Maybe you're not letting it rest long enough before eating.

I just bought a couple of tiny 6 ounce filets, just before this FPP. I haven't been buying much steak lately, the quality of beef has seriously declined in recent years. People wanted lean beef, and farmers adapted their process to produce leaner cows with less fat in the muscle. Result: steaks with no marbling that are tough as shoe leather. I have also noticed something odd, cuts like New York Strip now have sinews in them that make them impossible to cut. So at the butcher counter I commented about the lack of marbling as I asked the butcher to find me a couple of well marbled steaks. He found me a couple of small filets with some slight marbling, the best he could do. And then I noticed on the top of the cooler, there were pamphlets describing the virtues of lean beef. The virtue of red meat is that it is an easily digestible high concentration of nutrients. This virtue is not a virtue of lean beef, just of beef in general.
posted by charlie don't surf at 7:35 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


And what about the the whole Argentine Steak Tradition?

The classic beginner's mistake in Argentina is to neglect the first steak of the day.

"All you need to know about the quality of pasture in the pampas is that cows went feral in Argentina."
posted by straight at 8:22 PM on April 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


We had steak tonight for dinner. One for my mother and the other for me. I heated the cast iron skillet to smoking hot, which appalled my mother who insisted on cooking her own steak. After searing mine well on both sides, I put it on a warm plate to rest in the oven while my mother cooked hers in butter in the cast iron skillet at a much lower temperature. She cooked it to death, looked for the A-1 sauce and complained about how tough her was. Mine was delicious and tender and utterly delicious.
posted by shoesietart at 8:36 PM on April 11, 2013


Steak is great and all, but now that I can get fourteen ounces of tofu for a dollar, that's pretty much what I'm going to live on.
posted by koeselitz at 8:46 PM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'd like steak better if it didn't frequently take me 20 minutes to chew each bite. Gah. Oh well, tri-tip exists, so I'm good with that.
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:14 PM on April 11, 2013


Someone told me today that they only liked steak that was well done. I felt a sad.
posted by Artw at 9:56 PM on April 11, 2013


Someone told me today that they only liked steak that was well done. I felt a sad.

I am vegetarian now but steak was my favorite food as a child. To be honest, I still have a penchant for a well-done steak on a sandwich. Decadent. I'm pretty neutral on steak (obviously). I can understand the appeals of the rare, medium, and well. If I were at an unknown restaurant, I would order medium-rare.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:46 PM on April 11, 2013


This may forever be known as A. A. Gill's mantle piece.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:45 AM on April 12, 2013


A.A. Gill is the defining wanker of the mid- to late-1990s.

No, wait, that was James Brown of Loaded magazine. A.A. Gill isn't even that, then. Sorry, A.A.
posted by Grangousier at 2:48 AM on April 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Someone told me today that they only liked steak that was well done. I felt a sad.

I was eating my chocolate ice cream cone the other day and someone told me they prefer vanilla ice cream. I felt a sad.
posted by straight at 7:21 AM on April 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


You know who mantles? Herons. Not lizards. Heron-brains.

Also I love steak.
posted by hydrobatidae at 7:30 AM on April 12, 2013


You know who mantles? Herons.

Are you sure that's what they're doing?
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:21 AM on April 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I was eating my chocolate ice cream cone the other day and someone told me they prefer vanilla ice cream. I felt a sad.

Wow. You must be like me and feel a sad all the time /eponysterical

Vanilla is, by far, the most popular ice cream flavor.

I can dig it. Vanilla is dope.

Personally, my #1 is superman; #2 blue moon; #3 birthday cake. Yes, I am from the Midwest. Yes, I do like candy!
posted by mrgrimm at 8:22 AM on April 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


The virtue of red meat is that it is an easily digestible high concentration of nutrients.

"easily digestible" is not something I usually hear said about red meat.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 9:07 AM on April 12, 2013


The virtue of meat is that you can "grow" it, in the sense of grazing animals, on marginal land which wouldn't support other types of agriculture. And compared to other types of pre-industrial farming, letting some animals graze and then eating one of them periodically doesn't require a lot of effort.

When you get to the point of growing energy-intensive row crops on fertile land for the sole purpose of feeding to animals so that you can eat them, that's pretty goddamn backwards.
posted by Kadin2048 at 10:49 AM on April 12, 2013


Someone told me today that they only liked steak that was well done. I felt a sad.

I have a coworker who loves going to nice steakhouses and also only eats well done meat and so spends a lot of her time paying lots of money to argue with waiters about how well cooked her steak is.

It seems bonkers to me, but to each their own.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 11:24 AM on April 12, 2013


I'm really not seeing "I like vanilla ice cream" in that, I'm seeing "I like my ice cream as a melted puddle".
posted by Artw at 11:28 AM on April 12, 2013


Mmmm, ice cream soup.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:29 AM on April 12, 2013


with chocolate sauce.
posted by mrgrimm at 11:42 AM on April 12, 2013


I have a coworker who loves going to nice steakhouses and also only eats well done meat and so spends a lot of her time paying lots of money to argue with waiters about how well cooked her steak is.

A friend of mine hated steak when we first met. At some point I told her I like my steaks medium rare, with lots of pink in the middle. She looked at me horrified, asked me if I wasn't worried about getting sick. Turns out she believed, because here parents believed that steak had to be cooked all the way through like chicken or pork. And that's how they made their steaks. I looked back at her, horrified. "No wonder you hate steak!"

Last time I was over there she made us steaks, medium rare. Something she had been enjoying lately.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 4:40 PM on April 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I love the taste of steak but find the texture of uncooked cow flesh nauseatingly disgusting. It's too bad that makes you feel sad, because I'm enjoying my meal over here.
posted by straight at 6:08 PM on April 12, 2013


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