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Be sure to remove the meat from the freezer/fridge for about an hour to bring the steak to room temperature. This will allow the heat from the pan later to more effectively get to the core of the steak, to ensure a cooked steak with that perfect crust.
Heat the pan before placing the steak in it to give the crust a slightly sweet finish later. You want the meat to sizzle the minute it hits the heat. While waiting for the pan to heat up, generously season the steak with olive oil and pepper.
Turn the steak to make sure you get a really even cook. For different preferences of category of steak, here is a rough rule of thumb.
Rare: Dark red with some juices flowing. The uncut cooked steak will feel spongy, with only slight resistance. A rare steak should take just over two minutes on each side for a 3.5cm thick fillet steak. Reduce the time for thinner cuts.
Medium-rare: More pink with a little pink juice flowing. The uncut cooked steak will feel slightly springy and should take three mins each side for a 3.5cm thick fillet steak.
Medium: Pale pink in the middle with hardly any juice flowing. It will feel firm and only a little springy. Cook for 4.5 mins each side for a 3.5cm thick fillet steak.
Well-done: Only a trace of pink colour but not dry. There will be only a little spring to this uncut cooked steak. Cook for about 4-5 minutes each side for a 3.5cm steak.
It’s VERY important to leave the steak to rest at room temperature for at least 5 minutes. This allows the meat to reabsorb the juices, resulting in a moist and tender steak. Cutting into an un-rested steak will result in the juices flowing out, leading to a dry and flavourless meal.