Instructables

Simple steak slicing

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Cutting a steak is not as simple as slicing a loaf of bread. There are a few small details that must be observed in order to get a clean, solid looking cut. I have seen the same mistakes made on numerous occasions, and the difference in the appearance of the steak is noticeable. In a retail situation, it is the difference between a steak that is appealing to the eye (even an untrained one), and one that is not. Simply put, that can be the difference between selling it and not as well. This technique is applicable to both rib-eye (market) and New York steaks, and is also helpful in slicing a single steak in two thin halves.
 
 
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Step 1:

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You will need a nice, large cutting board, a clean towell, and a standard curved 10" butcher knife. You cannot cut a proper steak with a straight-bladed chef's knife, as the blade will not contact the cutting board at the proper angle. The knife needs to be sharp. That should go without saying, but from what I've seen, it doesn't. A sharp knife is less likely to cut you than a dull one because the handler will not have to fight with it. Also, please observe all safety regulations and common sense when using a dangerous instrument like a butcher knife. First, when the meat is taken out of the vac-pac, it needs to be dried thoroughly with the towell. Any blood on the meat will cause it to oxidize very quickly and turn brown. It will not be spoiled, but it will not look appealing. The cutting board also must be dried off. The meat should not feel loose, and the fat should be hard and white. If its too loose it means the meat has not been aged long enough, and will not be tender or appear solid on the tray.
Nice instructable!
Excellent cut of meat... looks great Im hungry now!

I love my NY strips. At my local butcher they sell for about 7-8 bucks a pound when you buy a single steak. but, They will also sell me a whole NY stripfor 4.99 a pound. They slice it up as thick/thin as I want and package them as I want as well..
For example, I get a 5/4 (1-1/4" thick steak) cut. I get about 12-14 steaks packaged 2 at a time for no extra fee....
so, if you are going to buy the whole loin, I'm sure the butcher there would slice them how-ever you want...

Keko (author)  SlickSqueegie2 years ago
You have a good butcher! Thanks for looking...
lucek2 years ago
I prefer a strait blade personally. Long strait sharp blades means less or even just a single stroke reducing sawing motion, allowing you to cut thinner if need be without the meat falling apart. (minute steaks anyone.)

Then if you chill but don't freeze the steak it holds up better and is easier to cut.
pgardner22 years ago
I'm at a loss...what cut, er, chunk of meat do you ask for when buying the meat to cut into steaks?

I found this article most interesting, but as a total novice to butchering, I don't know what you are cutting to make the steaks.
Keko (author)  pgardner22 years ago
The cut featured is a rib-eye (prime rib if ti had the bone). Most butcher shops will sell you a big enough piece to cut your own steaks...ask if there is a discount for buying a large piece. Have fun!
pgardner2 Keko2 years ago
Thanks so much! I would have to expect the price per steak would be less, then?
Keko (author)  pgardner22 years ago
Yes, a little. It probably depends on the amount you buy.
Ask your butcher for whatever primal you want.

https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Beef#American_primal_cuts

And then cut it however you want. (I am 99% sure that this is a 'loin' primal.)
Thank you! It helps to know the right terms, and I appreciate the tip.
aeray2 years ago
Good work. I'm a former pro cook, and part-time butcher, and your tips are right on. Please post again.
JP128 aeray2 years ago
Get it?!?! Your *tips* are right on! Ahaha :D Nice guide tho
Keko (author)  aeray2 years ago
Thank you! More to come perhaps...
bajablue2 years ago
Useful and informative! 5 Stars!!!
Keko (author)  bajablue2 years ago
Thanks...I'm glad you think so! One more thing for everyone: steaks always come out more tender if you do not put salt on them until after they are cooked.
vincent75202 years ago
yummy ! …
CrLz2 years ago
Tasty Ible, I'll take seconds.

Cool to see this posted. My mother-in-law taught me some similar techniques to nicely butcher large cuts from the store. She does a nice job with a pork-tenderloin, cutting nice chops, cubes for stew and fatty parts for slow-cooking. Having a little experience can really make the most out of the portion, exactly as you show!
Keko (author)  CrLz2 years ago
Your mother-in-law sounds cool...there is no substitute for old school techniques. Thanks for looking!