Classic Steak Cuts
Ever wondered why a New York steak is called such? Porterhouse? What is a T-bone?
Let's take a minute to break it down for ya. This post will feature classic "steak" cuts. I will do another post on other cuts of beef down the line.
Filet Mignon (also known as filet de boeuf, tender steak, beef tenderloin) - Mild, soft, buttery texture with very little fat. Comes from the longish tenderloin below the back near the rear of the cow and are usually cut into medallions.
Ribeye (also known as the cowboy, tomahawk, spencer or Delmonico) - Either boneless or bone in (I like bone in because I tend to agree that when roasting, the bone contributes more flavor). This cut has more fat, IMO more flavor, and is a more satisfying steak eating experience. Comes from the rib roast (classic prime rib is cut out of it same general area but usually as a roast and then sliced individually). The classic ribeye steak comes from the back half of the ribs, which is essentially the central part of a cow's back (ribs 6-12 typically - more marbling).
NY Strip (also known as shell, Kansas City, strip loin, club, sirloin) - Tends to be a little less expensive and may be the most utilitarian. Found one on side of the T-bone. Can be cut into strips for whatever you want or on its own. A good, economical mid-week dinner steak.
Porterhouse/T-bone - This cut contains both the delicate filet mignon and on the other side of the "T," a large strip (NY) steak. Technically, a true T-bone will have a smaller tenderloin whereas the porterhouse would have a little larger tenderloin. This cut comes behind the rib/rib roast section, near the back of the cow where the loin, etc. is (also ribs - think just after the mid back section).
Hanger (also known as hanging tender) - Considered the "butcher's cut" because that was what the butcher would get for the evening after a day of cutting meat because it didn't sell, or would be ground into burger. But like a lot of things, hanger steak is having a renaissance because of its intense flavor and tenderness. Great cut to experiment with that rub you were given for father's day. Cooks super quickly over high heat. Cook it to medium.
Flank (also known as fajita, Philadelphia) - A muscular cut, this piece should be cooked over high heat to medium rare (or slowly smoked) and cut against the grain (or too chewy).