My good friend Brunty blogged the other day about making home made hamburgers. While I commend him for not buying those disgusting frozen burger paddies and actually making his own I still winced when I saw this photo that he took.
I am a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to food and firmly believe that burger paddies belong in a bread roll. If you are going to use slices of bread then it must become a steak burger – not a hamburger! (Oh and in the words of Molly – ‘do yourself a favour’ and pop down to Peppers for a real loaf of bread instead of the plastic that comes from 7/11!)
Now in Thailand finding good steak is basically impossible unless you buy imported beef and even then it can be hit and miss. Like all good friends should do, I thought I would help Brunty make the perfect steak so that he can then go and make the perfect steak sandwich. To turn tough Thai beef into succulent steaks then wet ageing is the way to go.
The first this you need to do is obviously buy some beef. Head down to your local market or wave down the passing meat wagon and have a look over what ever the local butcher might be offering.
Remember, in rural Thailand the price per kg is the same no matter what part of the cow you are buying. Between 120 and 150 baht ($4-$5) will get you a kilo of brains, a kilo of liver or a kilo of sirloin. So choose the best part of the cow that you can. If you do not know the Thai words then point to various body parts on yourself or your embarrassed wife and they will quickly understand.
Take your purchase home, give it a bit of a clean and a tidy up then get the plastic wrap out and get wrapping! Tightly wrap the meat as firmly as you can and don’t be afraid to do it over and over again. Make sure you write the date on it as well.
Once that is done just bung it is the fridge for three weeks! Yep – it really is that easy. This next photo is taken just after I unwrapped it 21 days later. In my defence I was not at the market when the meat was purchased so it was not the best part available plus it was a little on the fatty side which you can see in the photo.
As this was my first time doing this I thought I would experiment a little bit so one steak got marinaded and the other one didn’t. The rest went down stairs and ended up on the BBQ. Actually this was my second time at this stage as a few weeks previously I had carefully cut up the pieces and gave them to Seerung to work her marinading magic on. She took them down stairs just as someone was coming into the property so she put the steaks down on the bottom of the stairs and went to open the gate for them. 10 seconds later she was back looking at an empty plate and a very guilty but full looking dog.
Anyway, I am trying to not dwell on that very
mad bad memory so back to this story! I cut them into individual steaks and then put one piece in my marinade which consisted of dark sweet soy sauce, a little salt and some lime juice.
I then placed them in a hot pan with a little olive oil.
Turn them only once.
The finished result. Success! They were so tender it was wonderful. I have to admit though that the steak without the marinade was a little bland but the other one was delicious. You can see that one of them had a bit of fat in it but that only added to the flavour. As we are leaving Ubon Ratchathani very soon I ran out of time to do another one but I can’t wait to get back and try again with a bigger and better cut of meat. An invite for a day of dining is perhaps in order Brunty? You can do the steak sammys for lunch and I will do the steaks for dinner!