With your dinner on the line, getting those frozen steaks ready
You are scurrying around preparing for your guests. Then to your horror, you realize that you have forgotten to thaw out the steaks. What’s a cook-out without beef?!
Is there hope?
Yes, but only for this grilling emergency.
Ideally beef should be thawed in a refrigerator. Slow thawing your steaks in their original vacuum seal is the perfect recipe for a fresh beef tasting experience. By pulling your steaks out of the freezer the evening before your cook-out, you will be ready to go when it is grill time.
But in a grilling emergency, you can speed up the thawing process by putting the steaks in a large stock pot with cold water. Never use hot water. FoodNetwork.com recommends that you change the cold water bath every 30 minutes. It seems like every year that is how we finish thawing our Thanksgiving turkey, except we place the bird under a stream of cold water.
No, No, No! Don’t think of it.
If you must (extreme emergency), do not defrost at 100% power. Take it way down to 50% or lower. The flavor, tenderness, and texture of your grass fed beef will be compromised if microwaving is not performed with extreme care. Again, avoid microwaving if at all possible.
Thawing your steaks by putting them on the kitchen counter for over two hours is not a healthy idea either. You do have the benefit of an airtight vacuum seal around your beef, but don’t give
bacteria a chance. A cold water bath will get the job done and keep those bad boys away.
A little kitchen counter time for your steaks, after they have been thawed and seasoned, is a good idea though. Sitting for close to 45 minutes will help even out the steak temperature and allow the seasonings to penetrate the meat prior to grilling. However, in a recent “The Food Lab” in Serious Eats, the room temperature method is challenged. The author presented data showing that a cold steak cooks just as evenly as the one brought to room temperature. Can’t argue with science.
I use a 24 hour thawing rule for all cuts of Flint Hills grass fed beef, including the roasts. If you
have a change of plans, with the vacuum sealed beef you can let it stay in the refrigerator a
couple of days after thawing. RecipeTips.com has a helpful chart that covers thawing times
for different sizes of roasts and ground beef.
So your cook-out was full of silent bliss as your guests savored the joys of beef raised on America’s native prairie grassland. The cold beef bath saved you this time. Next cook-out though, stick it in the fridge.
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