The Perfect Steak, tips and tricks to impress friends and family this Labor Day weekend

To help with your Labor Day plans we consulted CJ Willoya, Executive Chef at Sullivan's to get a few tips on how to cook the perfect steak.
Published: Sep. 2, 2020 at 8:28 AM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Grilling, cooking and entertaining, Labor Day is an opportunity to bring friends and family together often around food. Steaks, for example, the king of meats depending on who you ask, are a crowd favorite but they’ve got to be prepared and cooked correctly. To that end, we sought out some professional advice from the Executive Chef of Sullivan’s Steakhouse here in Anchorage, CJ Willoya.

“First thing is just to keep the seasoning at just salt and pepper,” says Chef Willoya as he sprinkles his chosen flavor enhancers over a raw cut of beef fillet.

Then it’s time for some heat. “Make sure we’re getting a nice good crust on it so we can lock in all the juices and flavor,” says Chef Willoya.

To do that the Chef recommends broiling your steak at a sweltering 550 to 600 degrees in the beginning.

“Then after we get it nice and hot we’re going to slow roll it a little bit in a warm oven,” says Chef Willoya. What that means to you at home is that after creating that nice crust to your steak with those high temperatures it’s best to move the meat to a lower 350 degrees to finish it out.

“We want to get that nice crust on it to keep all the juices in the inside and by cooking from the top down like we do we’re actually melting all those wonderful juices back into the steak instead of losing them from the bottom,” says Chef Willoya.

If you would rather grill than broil the same general rules apply though you may not have an exact gauge on the temperature. “Put it in the hot spot (on your grill) so you get that good sear and then just move it over to a slightly cooler zone so it can still get that heat and you won’t destroy the steak as you get up to your desired temperature,” says Chef Willoya.

Follow these simple rules and your home-cooked steak just might approximate something you’d order in a restaurant, more importantly, it just might impress the mouths and stomachs of your holiday weekend guests making you the grill master of your own domain.

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