May 30th, 2009
While visiting home recently, I spent the evening with my dad, preparing my favorite meal, London Broil. Him and I discussed the etiquette for preparing a meal like this, and in the event I was to cook this for guests or “special someones,” I decided to take down what we talked about.
The following is a guide to preparing a great London Broil, and how to accompany it with a matching wine. I found this to be helpful with every steak dinner I’ve made since then.
A. Always grill your steak, or broil it if you don’t have a grill.
B. Get yourself a nice steak, preferably a “Top Round.” Cut away at the excess fat that you can. Season the steak with salt and pepper to taste. Alternatively, you could rub the steak down in olive oil and season with your own array of herbs and spices, but salt and pepper bring out the steak’s natural flavors.
C. Get yourself a good wine to pair it with. London Broil works great with Red Wine. Tonight’s recommendation is a Cabernet Sauvignon from Mount Veeder Winery in Napa Valley, 2005 vintage.
- Tasting your wine is important before imbibing. To taste wine, open the bottle and let set for a few minutes to air out. You may decant the wine to speed up this process.
- Pour “a good sip” of wine into an appropriate red wine glass. Swirl the wine around in the glass a few moments to unlock the aromatic flavors, and smell. Smell with determination, placing your nose in the glass, tipping it to bring the smell as close to your senses as possible.
- It is important to note that wine should never be cloudy. It should always be clear when held up to the light. Unless it is noted by a somalier to appear cloudy, send it back for a good bottle.
- Drink the wine, swishing it in your mouth to contact every tastebud on top and under your tongue. The better the wine, the stronger and longer the aftertaste.
- Wine activates all of the four major taste groups: sweet, sour, salt, and acid. While wine has so many different flavors to identify, they all come from these four major categories.
- The best way to savor the flavor of a wine is, right after swallowing, to breath in through your mouth, and exhale through your nose. You will taste the wine once more, capturing the aromatic flavor of the wine.
D. Grill the steak on high heat for about four to five minutes on each side, depending on the size and thickness.
E. The time-tested method to see if the steak is done is simply to feel it. If it is soft, it’s not done. If it is tough, its not only done, but possible overdone. You must use your personal judgement to determine how done you want it, as each person prefers their steak differently. Five minutes per side will cook the steam to about medium-well.
F. Remove from the grill, and let it rest for another five minutes. The steak is still cooking on the inside, even after you take it off the heat, and the juices in the meat will be reinfused in it, making the steak taste a lot better than if served fresh from the grill.
G. London Broil is not so much a type of steak, but moreso a method of serving it. It is sliced, at an angle, in thin strips. Cutting the steak at an angle or “against the grain” allows it to break apart easier when eating.
H. With your personal choice of sandwich bread, stack the meat up and accompany with your favorite toppings, steak sauce or au jus.