5 Ways to Flavor Your Meat While It’s Resting
It’s almost June, everyone, and that means that grill season is upon us! Along with outdoor BBQs and drinking cold beer in the sun, grilling also means that it’s time to make your cooking regimen way simpler. Grilling is not about slaving away over your grill for hours (however, if that’s your style, we have recipes for you); it’s about searing a steak, vegetables or kebabs to perfection and then sitting back, eating and enjoying. With this idea of simplicity in mind (or, let’s be honest, laziness), we’re all about post-grill seasoning this year. While a generous dusting of salt is essential when cooking a good steak, most of the marinade or rub that you might have painstakingly spent time on will burn or fall off while on the grill. To add major flavor to your meat this summer, try one of these easy, chef-approved ways to season your meat after it’s off the grill.
1. Use Discarded Herb Stems
Matt Jennings, Townsman, Boston: “I like to save my herb stems—sturdy herbs like rosemary, oregano and thyme work best—and use them as a bed to rest my meat on after it's done cooking. The residual oils on the stems make their way up into the protein to impart an amazing amount of flavor.” This trick also works really well with fish, but stick to herbs with a brighter flavor, such as basil or cilantro stems.
2. Save Leftover Fat
Jimmy Bannos, Jr., The Purple Pig, Chicago: “For the juiciest, most flavorful steak, rest your meat on rendered beef fat before serving. This adds extra richness and helps the steak maintain its juices, making for a perfectly tender texture.” If you’re not in the mood to cook down your own beef fat, rendered beef fat, or tallow, can be purchased at most specialty food shops or directly from your butcher. We’re also big fans of the jarred fats from Fatworks. Consider trying this tip with their jarred chicken fat, too, which would be great under grilled chicken or charred potatoes.
3. Learn to Love “Love Butter”
Brad Farmerie, Saxon + Parole, New York City: “We make a butter that we call our 'Love Butter' to replicate the finishing butter that restaurants use when pan roasting meat. After your meat comes off the heat, brush on a mix of melted butter, garlic, thyme, and a touch of duck fat (if you have it). We use it to finish just about everything, especially steak.”
4. Shave Garlic Over the Top
Christophe Hille, Fleishers Craft Butchery, Kingston, NY: “As a steak or roast is resting, I use a mandoline to shave very thin slices of raw garlic directly over your meat. The heat wilts the garlic and releases the most incredible aroma. To take it one step further, I’ll even give my meat a drizzle of quality olive oil for a bitter green kick or Turkish pomegranate molasses for a sweet tang.”
5. Brush with Leftover Olive Brine
Brad Farmerie, Saxon + Parole, New York City: “I always save my leftover olive brine to brush on my meat while it’s resting. It gives this magical whisper of flavor and a nice salinity that works with almost anything that you would put on the grill.”