What is searing
What is searing by the way? By definition, burning as is to cook something hot and fast to brown the surface and to seal in the juices. Yet many of the leading cooking experts agree that searing does not seal in juices. For me and science, it seems that it is a fact that sealing with liquids is not as effective as it should be, and it doesn’t work well. Therefore it is not the goal of searing.
Searing is a process of cooking involves recreating that crusty texture that a lot of people are drawn to and find attractive the sugars that produce the steak flavor that a lot of us want. To sear means to scorch or burn something, with very intense and sudden heat.
For this review, the art of searing is a cool technique that any individual serious about preparing quality meat should try to learn and perfect. This is just like the same principle above; applying the meat on a boiling surface for a short space of time. It imprints a glorious aroma.
It adds an extra layer of flavor because of the Mallard reaction, as the outer part of the meat becomes browned, thus leading to a very visually attractive piece of food, and we will explain more on this during this review.
Some would suggest that you require a blast furnace to achieve a great sear. Makers of most infrared grills always talk about going for temperatures that are over 700 degrees to make a good sear. Also, they claim that this kind of heat can only be used for about 60 seconds before the outer surface of the meat starts burning and charring.
What we instead desire is to have a juicy piece of meat, and because of this, the first primary rule of searing is not to overcook it. Since we all know that there is no shortcut to searing that can contain the juices on a steak well, you shouldn’t then forget to remove the steak from the grill at that magical moment and not even a minute later.
One other thing you need to note is that most grills that are still working correctly can comfortably sear meat, and you need to apply the right technique to it.
How to get the Right Sear
So you may ask, how can I get the right sear? The first and significant rule of searing is to be brave. Just because that your steak is starting to become brown does not mean you should flip it. Just try to observe to get a dark brown color before then flipping, and don’t settle for a golden color.
It should be dark brown, but not too black at the same time. This art of browning is what is going to offer that steak the texture and flavor you want. If you sear to attain the character and not the juices, and you also don’t overcook, then you would be rewarded with a fantastic piece of grilled meat.
The process of having a good sear starts before even lighting the fire. You need to have a perfect and clean cooking surface. This would create the space required for the contact between the metal and meat. You could also oil the cooking grate, although when handling fattier meats it becomes somewhat unnecessary.
By the time you oil the bed, you need to use the right oil that has a high smoke point. Canola, Safflower, and even sunflower oils tend to disintegrate at much higher temperatures than oils like lard or olive. Once the oil starts breaking down, it then produces smoke and a somewhat bad flavor. So in case, you plan on oiling the grate, then go for one of these oils.
Searing is not burning!
Well, it somehow sounds a lot like burning. In a way, you could call it that, although it is referred to as a controlled burn, and it is not the kind of injury that makes a briquette indistinguishable from a brisket. Just think of it as an intense and brief period of cooking.
The main idea is to quickly cook the outer part of the meat, before then finishing the inside slowly you reach the desired level of doneness. Although there are individuals who like the taste of charred meat; it evokes a very intense flavor scent.
If you’re one of those individuals, you would then need to sear longer than the average. You may have to go Chicago-style, although that’s not exactly our focus or theme for this article. Unlike roasting or broiling, searing instead involves a sudden and intense blast of high heat for a short period, rather than cooking for an extended period at a very regulated and constant temperature.
Why Should You Sear Your Meat?
When you intentionally burn something, it sounds counterintuitive. Still, apart from the fact that it would enhance the flavor of your meat, it would also serve to impress your guests with the professional technique you’re employing!
The main reason for searing meat is actually to introduce a complex combination of flavor and texture, but this simple process has been for long misunderstood by many cooking enthusiasts.
The Logic behind Searing Meat before Cooking
Since we have now established the fact that meat is not juicier once it has been seared, you then begin to ask the question on why cooks still do it. Apart from the fact that this searing introduces an appealing and attractive flavor, it also formulates a pairing within the meat.
The heart of the cut chunk would not be so cooked, and it would be way juicier than the seared outer part. A lot of mouths would relish the complementary differences in flavor and texture.
Also, when you sear the surface at a high temperature, the exterior of the meat then turns to brown. Browning also affords the meat that appetizing color and lets the brain and eyes know that the meat has been cooked.
Types of Meat
About the meat, you need to ensure that it retains a dry surface. Marinades are good to go, as long as the marinade drips off the meat first. Water is not so good because it changes to steam immediately and it would lift the meat away from the grate for that steam to escape. This would further lead to uneven grill marks, although it would help in cooling off the grate, thus reducing the sear as well.
A piece of meat that has a dry surface is ideal, but, of course, we all know about the many advantages of marinades when you think of all the bad things that can be formed on grilled meats. With a clean grill and a dry piece of meat, it is now time to go into preheating. This is equally important.
You would have to turn on all of your grills and increase the main burners until it reaches high. You then let the grill heat up for about 10 minutes or when it gets to its maximum temperature, and you can do well to read up on you grills manual to know what the best preheating times are.
The experience you have with this piece of equipment is quite essential, so use your knowledge of the grill and common sense to ensure it remains as hot as it was when you got it.
Now that you are ready
Now that you are ready to sear. You need virtually everything that is within arm’s reach, and you also need to move around quickly. Your grill has been able to store up just about as much heat as you need and you need to keep and maintain it there.
Just lift the lid and put the meat on your grill as safely and quickly as you can. If you know where the cold and hot spots are, then aim for those hot parts. Now that the meat is on the grill, you can then proceed to close the lid. This is not done because you want the meat to cook all around, but rather it is to store the heat in the grill. Most experts would advise that you flip in one minute. That may not or maybe the case.
Like I mentioned earlier, let your experience guide you, but you need to oversee the clock, as it is suitable for future reference. As I said, you want to get a right, brown color on the meat, but you surely do not want to be checking the meat and lid repeatedly to know when it is attainable.
If the meat is browned correctly, you have to flip to an unused portion of your cooking grate. This portion would still be boiling. The place where the meat previously was has now cooled down, and you need to go for the heat still available.
The time that it takes the meat on the second side to finish should be the same as the first side too so. Hopefully, your eyes stay on the clock. Now that you are done with the searing process, it is time to finish what you were previously cooking.
If you are searing a roast, you have to get the roast out of the heat and place it into indirect grilling. If you are also searing steaks or chops, then you want to reduce the heat and finish off. After flipping, then leave the meat in the same position on the grill, unless you have flare-ups. If you leave the lid open for a minute, your grill would then cool off to the desired temperature that would, in turn, give you the room to have the meat cooked thoroughly without also having to char the surface.
If the cut is made thinly, then you could be almost done. Apart from this, do grill until the meat gets to the desired doneness and don’t forget to let the steak stay still for a couple of minutes before you serve it. This further allows the juices to flow out into the surface.
The Final Sear
I first thought I had successfully mastered the art of grilling when I was able to figure out a way of cooking my meat all the road without having to burn it. I later realized that I was starting on my culinary journey!
By also adding techniques involving searing to my already full repertoire, I realized that it helped to enhance the quality of my flavor and presentation dramatically. Furthermore, it seems like searing tends to function as the finishing touch for a perfectly cooked meat, although it becomes visible at the beginning.
In case you have a couple of tips you’d like to inform us about, please kindly do so! While there are different guides to the art of cooking, nothing can serve as a substitute to having a personal experience, and all other tips and secrets we learn during searing.
One major thing you need to note about muscle cells is the fact that cooking helps in squeezing out the juices, but when you take the meat off the heat and allow it fresh, you would notice or realize that some of the liquids would then be reabsorbed into those cells where they are needed.
That is another reason why you need to rest your meat after cooking it, as this is extremely important. If you decide to slice straight into it, those juices then pour out onto your cutting board or plate.
But if you wait for a while, then those juices become reabsorbed into the cells, thus inferring that you would not have many spills onto your plate. If you need further clarifications or have questions to ask on searing and what it entails fully, please endeavor to read other reviews that shed more light on this topic.