What is flank steak and how to cook it at home?
Today, Shop Intercity is excited to add flank steaks to the list of available products. To celebrate, we're sharing some of our tips and tricks to cooking with this steak.
What is flank steak?
First, let's start with a brief overview of what a flank steak is. The flank steak is a large, flat cut that gets its name because it comes from the “flank” or belly of the animal. The most comparable cuts of steak to the flank are the hanger steak and the skirt steak. Like the hanger and the skirt, flank steak has a strong beef flavour and benefits from using marinades and high heat cooking methods.
Cooked flank steak is one of our favourite cuts of meat to recommend because it's a very lean cut of protein. The value is great too. Compare the price per ounce to other lean protein options and you'll find that it's a perfect choice for family meals or for anyone who enjoys weekly meal prepping.
Finding flank steak at your local grocery store, much like the cow itself, can be spotty. So take advantage of our home-delivery or curbside pickup options when you order from Shop Intercity.
How to cook flank steak.
Of all the benefits of choosing flank steak, the versatility of this cut really is what makes it great for the home chef. Marinated flank steak can be seared whole, sliced, and served. It can be marinated and barbecued. It can be stuffed and roasted. It can be thinly sliced, seasoned, and fast fried. There really are endless flavour combinations of spices, rubs, and marinades that you can try. Flank steak is popular for use in fajitas and stir fry meals.
The flank steak is a fun and easy cut of meat to prepare but does require special attention when cooking and slicing. It can be regarded as "tough" or "chewy" if it isn't tenderized first. We recommend using a meat tenderizer on the cut before cooking or using citrus juices in your marinade. Marinated flank steak takes on flavours really well, and as long as you slice it against the grain (across the muscle fibers) it will result in a very tender cut of beef.
Follow these tips the next time you're cooking with flank steak:
- Add Your Favourite Flavours - Marinate or dry rub to add your favourite flavour profile. You can experiment here with different spices and citrus juices, like lime juice, lemon juice, or orange juice. Other popular household ingredients to experiment with are balsamic vinegar or soy sauce. The acids found in citrus and vinegars will break down the muscle fibers that would naturally give the steak a tough texture.
- Cook Using High Heat - Cast iron sear with a little olive oil, or grill over high heat to form a char on the outside that’s full of flavour.
- Don’t Overcook - For best results, serve medium rare or medium. This typically means cooking the meat for just a few minutes per side.
- Rest & Slice - After high heat cooking, always allow the flank steak to rest. Our recommendation is to let the meat rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing. Resting allows the protein fibers to relax and the juices to redistribute throughout the meat. This process is what gives you a tender flank steak. If you were to slice before resting, all the juices would end up on your cutting board.
Since the flank is a large cut of beef, it's often too much for one person to eat in one meal. If you have leftovers to refrigerate, serving cold on a sandwich or salad is a great option. For anyone who likes to prepare their meals for the upcoming week in advance, we suggest cooking 1-degree of doneness less to account for reheating the meal later in the week.
3 of our favourite flank steak recipes.
For some added inspiration in the kitchen, here are 3 of our favourite ways to prepare this delicious cut:
Flank Steak Roulade - Stuffed with Swiss chard, Jura de Montagne Cheese and caramelized onions.
Sliced Flank Steak Street Tacos - Dry rubbed and seared. Served with grilled pineapple, avocado, & chile de arbol salsa.
Thai Flank Steak Noodle Salad - Soy & ginger marinated and chargrilled. Served with a chili lime vinaigrette, mango, herbs and crispy noodles.
We would love to see the meals that you make with your flank steak from Shop Intercity. You can share your pictures and videos with us on Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #shopintercity, and you can tag us as well.