With current food trends, steak has become a little more interesting than just your classic eye fillet. Live Fire Bar and Restaurant’s head chef Paul Roets is a master when it comes to beef and has shared with us his tips for the best cuts to try …
1. Skirt steak
This muscle is responsible for controlling the beast’s diaphragm, so it gets a good work out, which means lots of flavour. It can be a tricky cut to cook – if it is cooked wrong you will be left with a tough piece of meat. But when you get it right, you will be rewarded with one of the most delicious steaks you can eat. For best results, grill or pan fry quickly or cook low and slow. To serve, slice it against the grain to help keep it tender. At Live Fire we serve a Wagyu 9+ marble skirt – the extra fat gives a nice crunchy crust and keeps the meat tender and juicy.
This cut is all the rage at the moment. Located at the lower part of the breast/chest, this muscle supports 60% of the beast’s weight, so it is fair to say it gets a work out. Slow cooking brings out the best of this cut. Our preferred method is Texas barbecue style, in the smoker over a low heat and plenty of smoke for at least five hours. A little tip – leave on the fat cap as it will be your friend and will keep the meat nice and juicy over the long cook time. To serve, we finish our brisket by basting it with a house-made coffee and bourbon barbecue sauce.
3. Beef ribs
There are a few different options here. At Live Fire we like a short rib as it comes with a nice hunk of meat attached to the bone (think The Flintstones). Like the brisket, a slow cook it the best option to break down the collagen and make it nice and gelatinous. We use a bit of smoke but is not essential for this one, just make sure it is low and slow. You’ll get the best results between five to seven hours’ cook time. We serve ours with a South African barbecue sauce called Monkey Gland (contains no monkey!), a fruit-chutney-based barbecue sauce.
The humble T-Bone. It has fallen out of popularity a bit lately, but we love it! Especially the 1.3 kg monster that we serve. The t-bone is a combination of the porterhouse on one side and the tenderloin (eye fillet) on the other. Best done on a hot charcoal grill, cooking it on the bone will make the cook time a bit longer but the trade off is a nice juicy steak close to the bone. Don’t be afraid to chew on the bone at the end, it’s the best bit of a t-bone.
5. Scotch/rib fillet
This one is not an uncommon cut, but it is our favourite prime cut of beef. Flavourful like a rump but tender like and eye fillet, the scotch/rib fillet has a bit more fat than the other cuts but this keeps it nice and juicy. Simply grill or pan fry to your liking with a good hit of salt and pepper. We have two options on the menu – a 100% grass-fed scotch fillet from Cape Grim in Tasmania and the Rolls-Royce of steak, the 9+ marble Wagyu Kobe rib fillet.