Reverse Sear Hanger Steak: Master the Technique

When it comes to preparing a perfectly cooked hanger steak, the reverse sear method is a game-changer. This technique involves a two-step process: starting with a low-temperature oven bake followed by a quick, high-heat sear in a pan. The result? A steak that boasts a succulent, evenly cooked interior with a beautifully caramelized crust.

Understanding the Reverse Sear Method

The reverse sear method flips the traditional searing process on its head. Instead of searing the steak first and then finishing it in the oven, you start with the oven and end with the sear. This slow-cook approach allows for better control over the internal temperature, leading to a more consistent cook throughout the meat.

Ingredients and Tools You Will Need

Before diving into the reverse sear, ensure you have the following:

  • A hanger steak
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • High-smoke-point oil (such as avocado or grapeseed oil)
  • A meat thermometer
  • A cast-iron skillet
  • Butter, garlic, and fresh herbs (optional, for flavor)

Step 1: Season and Oven-Bake the Hanger Steak

Season your hanger steak generously with kosher salt and black pepper. Let it sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes. Preheat your oven to a low temperature, around 225°F (107°C). Place the seasoned steak on a wire rack over a baking sheet and insert the meat thermometer into the thickest part of the steak.

Bake the steak in the oven until the thermometer reads about 10-15 degrees lower than your desired final temperature. For a medium-rare finish, this should be around 120°F (49°C).

reverse sear hanger steak

Step 2: Sear the Steak to Perfection

Once the steak reaches the target temperature in the oven, remove it and let it rest while you preheat your cast-iron skillet over high heat. When the skillet is smoking hot, add a couple of tablespoons of high-smoke-point oil.

Sear the steak for about 1-2 minutes on each side, or until a deep brown crust forms. If desired, add butter, garlic, and fresh herbs to the skillet in the last minute of searing, and baste the steak with the aromatic butter.

Tips for Achieving the Perfect Reverse Sear Hanger Steak

– Patience is key; do not rush the oven-baking process.
– Use a reliable meat thermometer to avoid overcooking.
– Allow the steak to rest after removing it from the oven to ensure the juices redistribute.
– Keep the sear time short and sweet; the steak is already cooked to the desired doneness.
– Experiment with aromatics during the sear for added flavor depth.

By following these steps and tips, you’ll be able to serve a reverse sear hanger steak that’s sure to impress any steak aficionado.

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