A funny thing happens when people “force” themselves into a new eating plan: Either they decide dieting sucks and promptly quit their new approach, or they see it as a new opportunity to rediscover food. An exploration of spices and marinades, seasonings and food combinations, lead many people to realize that all food is pretty delicious—you just have to find the right way to bring out the flavor.
Your goal is to realize that eating healthy doesn’t have to be a frustrating experience. Any limitation can be viewed as a bad thing or as a gateway to creativity and enjoyment. After all—healthy food can be delicious and food should be enjoyed. It’s the best approach to any eating plan, and something that I stress with all the diets I create for my online clients.
Here’s a steak recipe that will surprise—both in terms of preparation and enjoyment. It’s the perfect fit for anyone following the program in Engineering the Alpha or those interested in eating a great steak. Give it a try and you will be more than satisfied.
[Chef’s note: This recipe is for people who enjoy cooking or want to spend a little time in the kitchen. It’s not the quickest, but it makes a really good steak. The technique works best for thick cuts of meat.]
1. Freeze your steak for at least 1.5 hour. The more frozen it is, the longer it will take to cook. [Yes, you read that correctly. I want you to freeze your steak.]
2. Heat up your barbecue or use an iron skillet. If you’re really feeling fancy, buy a $30 blowtorch from the hardware store. (This is actually one of the best ways to go)
3. Heat up your oven to its lowest setting over 175 degrees. For most people, this will mean setting it to 180 degrees.
4. Add olive oil, salt, and pepper to your steak. (The oil is simply to add to the ‘char’ since it’s a fat and will burn easily. You can add some Turkish ground coffee if you want a richer flavor.)
5. Char the outside of the steak to desired char level using your BBQ, skillet, or blowtorch. This makes it look good and provides that steak house flavor.
Note: The steak will still be raw in the middle; even slightly frozen. This was the point of freezing the meat. This allows for a great exterior char without overcooking.
6. Insert and leave in thermometer.
Note: The thermometer will have a probe, cord, and readout that will be outside the oven.
7. Put steak in 180-degree oven on a rack with drip pan.
8. Cook to your desired temperature. As a point of reference, 130 degrees will give you medium rare steak.
Depending on the degree of frozen, this process will take about 1 hour.
9. Serve and enjoy some incredibly delicious steak.
The science behind the flavor
Freezing and oil allow for good char on your steak. Low and slow cooking allows for the proteins to breakdown and bind making the steak, which make it very tender. (Translation: The best type of steak possible) This is the same logic as BBQ smoking. Furthermore, the slow temp allows for uniformity of cooking so you have balanced flavor. The result is one incredible (and healthy) steak.
Adam Bornstein is a New York Times bestselling author and, according to The Huffington Post, “one of the most inspiring sources in all of health and fitness.” An award-winning writer and editor, Bornstein was the Fitness and Nutrition editor for Men’s Health, Editorial Director at LIVESTRONG.com, and a columnist for SHAPE, Men’s Fitness, and Muscle & Fitness. He’s also a nutrition and fitness advisor for LeBron James, Cindy Crawford, Lindsey Vonn, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. His work has been featured in dozens of publications, including The New York Times, Fast Company, ESPN, and GQ, and he’s appeared on Good Morning America, The Today Show, E! News, and The Cheddar.