The Mythbusting Chef – Kevin McKeown

Chef

What’s the best steak you can think of?

Filet Mignon, Eye Fillet, Wagyu Beef? Grass or grain fed? Gas, electric or charcoal? To cook meat to succulent perfection is an art form, one that Executive Chef, Kevin McKeown, at Steersons Steakhouse takes very seriously.

Hailing from Northern Ireland, McKeown found his calling at the tender age of 16 when he apprenticed at Metro Restaurant in Belfast. Eagerly learning from the back of the busy galley, he soon realised that his parents way of cooking meat was entirely wrong. “The way they cooked meat was to make sure it was well done and cooked to death,” says McKeown.

Preferring his steak juicy and blushing pink, he recommends you flip the piece of meat frequently while cooking for a more even result. “There are no rules to flipping steaks. It’s a made up myth that you lose the juices by flipping,” adds McKeown controversially. “It’s scientifically proven that you cook the meat faster by 30% when you flip,” he continues.

However, how you eat your meat McKeown believes stems from your cultural background and what you grew up understanding as being “normal” giving examples of the French preference for steak tartare to the British preference for meat well-done.

After all, preference is a big decider when it comes to making that final decision from the menu at Steersons.

Patrons can choose the cut of meat, flavoured butter or sauce to even farming style – grass or grain fed. Each aspect impacts the flavour. A flavour worth showing off as only the best will do here.

“If you have a good piece of meat, you don’t need to marinade it – you want its natural flavours to shine through,” says McKeown. That’s why the suppliers are vital – in Steersons case choice cuts from Rangers Valley, NSW Riverina. “When you are buying your grain fed meat, make sure it has marbling though out as that’s what makes it so buttery,” adds McKeown.

Other hot tips from this experienced Chef include:

  • Grill/hot plate needs to be 200 degrees plus to properly seal the steak. Don’t put the lid over the top of the steak when cooking as that’ll only stew the meat.
  • Olive oil adds bitter elements to the taste and will burn the meat. Grape Seed oil is a better alternative.
  • Always BBQ on charcoal or gas – hard to generate heat on electrics, which won’t cook the meat properly.
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