I have to say the steak available at any supermarket 40 years ago was delicious. They really USED to be good tasting.
I do not know exactly what they are doing differently now, buy red meat now tastes like garbage compared to back then.
Part of it is the lack of blood left in the meat, and part is the extended cold storage. And probably the local butchering is no longer done.
I just have to say, they have turned a delicious food into tasteless sawdust as if by magic.
I just no longer bother to eat red meat. Pity.
And I like meat, juicey bloody, near raw..(nearly raw, but nice and hot) Yum!!!
Porterhouse - period. You get the best of all worlds - filet mignon - strip steak and good music.
I agree with your statements and would add:
Prime cuts were more readily available in supermarkets then.
Today, while still available in regular groceries, the cost of feed, transport etc. take prime out of reach for many consumers. Because of the higher cost of the prime cuts they are almost exclusively offered in finer restaurants, few remaining butcher shops and boutique/upscale grocers.
Feed has changed over the years, which will effect the flavor of the beef. We've all heard the corn vs. grain fed beef debate.
Much cattle doesn't get the exercise it used to. Exercise increases blood flow in the muscle. The more work a muscle gets the more flavorful it becomes. In addition the greater amount of exercise increases the amount of fat in the lean, and as we all know the flavor is in the fat.
Many consumers are concerned with their intake of fat nowadays opting for leaner cuts of beef. These leaner cuts, by virtue of the grading system, are of a lesser quality costing less too. Responding to the demands of the market grocers are carrying leaner cuts. Prime being the best (most marbling), followed by choice, good and standard.
Sorry to ramble, just thought I'd share.
P.S. My favorite is a N.Y. strip medium rare :o)!
Elizabeth, since I'm a little under 40 I'm not sure exactly what grocery stores were like back then, but I can still find some mighty tasty steaks in some upscale grocery stores around. It works for me, anyway.
But I do agree with Elizabeth in liking the steak very rare. I had a girlfriend once that I took to a steakhouse in Chicago. When the waiter asked her, "How would you like your steak cooked?", she replied, "Still mooing." At that point, I knew she might be a keeper. I miss her.
One of my favorite food related movie lines is from the Marlborough Man.
Woody Harrelsons character when asked by the waiter how he'd like his steak done replied " Knock the horns off it, wipe it's ass and put it on a plate!"
Some folks just don't live in the right part of the country, I guess. Where I live you can still get locally butchered prime beef. My personal favorite is a New York strip steak done "charred rare", grilled over a very hot open flame (over 500 degrees) after being seasoned with McCormick's Salt 'n Spice, served with creamed spinach and potatoes lyonnaise. Serve with Mahler or Shostakovich, and oh, boy! ;)
Many steak connoisseurs consider the ribeye to be the best combination of tenderness and flavor, and I heartily agree. I was raised in Buffalo on New York strips, but I like ribeyes just a shade better.
A friend of mine relayed his story... first job out of high school was at the local meat packers/slaughter house. He worked for half the day, quit without asking for his pay and never ate meat again to this day. I would just as soon take a bite out of my dog. That is my choice, YMMV
Rare Ribeye with the largest "skirt piece" (don't know the butcher-shop correct name for it) to eye ratio. That skirt piece (the part surrounding the eye) is awesome! And get it at your local natural foods supermarket. Here we have local beef raised free-range and fed range grasses and grain, no corn. It's excellent grilled over mesquite or using mesquite chips with a gas grill.
Sounds like a great meal!
What you say is true by virtue of the location of the cuts of beef in the animal.
The NY while more flavorful is a bit tougher. It gets more work. So the Ribeye while more tender is a little less flavorful, getting less work.
Elizabeth, if you regret what has happened to beef, pity the poor pig. They bred all of the fat out of it trying to make it the other white meat or some such travesty. What is left is a tough veneer of porcine gristle. At least beef is still recognizable.
I'm good with a rib eye or porterhouse and a nice red wine, BTW.
A Priest and a Rabbi were talking.... Priest: so Rabbi, you are not supposed to eat pork.. have you ever? Rabbi, well... I was very hungry once and I could not resist the temptation... so I did partake one time. Rabbi: So Father, in your religion you are to remain celibate, so have you ever...Father: Well, I was weak one time when i was younger and could not resist. Rabbi: A whole lot better than pork, huh?
I never eat or drink while doing critical listening, but I can have a background music coming out of the computer in the kitchen.
As for the different kinds of stakes, frankly I have no idea what you are talking about, but I do like venizon done right, medium rare, I guess, very hot and spicy but not too spicy. Beef stake can be fine too, of course.
And for drinks to go down along with it, well, good French or Spanish wine will do just fine. Or couple of shots of vodka, but not Finish or Polish, thank you.
Isochronism, it's a good one. So have you ever eaten a steak?
I have enjoyed meat for years, tho decided against it some time ago for my own ethical feelings.
Elizabeth, You can still get steaks that taste the way they did 40 years ago, but you have to pay for it. Try Lobel's Prime dry-aged steaks. Order a couple of porterhouse steaks and enjoy. I guarantee you won't stop eating until you have eaten every bit of meat off the bone. Lobel's sends the steaks out fresh, not frozen and delivered the next day, so you know they are fresh and they are delicious.
If you want chicken that tastes like it did 40 years ago try Smart Chicken organic chicken. It is tender and delicious like chicken is supposed to be.
Sufentanil, We have the same taste. Porterhouse steak, California Cab, Montreal Steak seasoning and steaks criss crossed on the grill. Perfect!
Speaking of ethics, I believe that it is better to hunt and eat what you kill than raise a cattle to be slaughtered. At least an animal in the wild has a chance to survive.
Fish can be good too, but I don't think I can exclude meat altogether. Besides here in NYC area it is quite expensive though a lot of it comes from outside the US.
Anyway, steak can be really good. Now I'll go eat something. To my regret this is not going to be a steak, just a sandwitch.
Cooking steak. Put it on a fork and SHOW it to the flame.
There is NO eating in my listening room. Beverages are tricky enough.
I much prefer a Boston Butt, cooked about 14 hours with apple wood. It's a southern thing. :-)
Ah, Michael, a terrific thread, and I thank you.
Like Marty, I'll take a ribeye/Delmonico or Porterhouse. I'm happy either way.
So far, surprisingly, the most consistently good source of beef in a store I've found is Costco, as good as that served in the midlevel steakhouses.
For sake of example, comparison, and an eye toward putting us on the same page using one well-known chain that serves all tiers: Del Frisco's, high-end ($40 - $60/steak), Sullivan's, midlevel ($30 - $50/steak), and LoneStar, lower-end ($15 - $30/steak).
Del Frisco's offers quite a nice experience for steak, though I their ancillaries lacking. I also like Union Trust here in Philadelphia, for a non-chain location. I give the nod to Del Frisco's for the meat, and Union Trust for everything else, including the clever touch of including Philadelphia soft pretzels as part of the bread course. Though we have some other steakhouses of note, I'll only mention that Morton's of Chicago and the currently popular (all you can eat) Brazilian rodizios disappoint.
I've often been let down by the steaks purchased at some of the remaining butcher shops in this area, along with most of what Whole Foods sells. You can sometimes do OK at the Reading Terminal or some of the very many farmer's markets here. I've been intent on visiting a few of the local farms that raise their own grass fed beef.
Credit to my very dear friend, The Doctor (Mechans), who Michael actually introduced me to, for teaching me the magic of salt when it comes to meat. I now consider it as critical as the meat itself. Progressed from chicken to pork to lamb to beef. Today, I'm convinced that proper salting of the meat well in advance of cooking is key to success, and I cannot stress that enough. I've also more or less come to the opinion that nothing should be put on the steak apart from salt prior to cooking, as they're apt to impart bitterness/bad taste as they burn in cooking, but these seasonings can be added afterward.
If we're talking other meats, I cook a lamb roast with rasberry/chipolte marinade and pork butt with various chili powder/garlic salt dry seasonings for Carnitas (6 hours, low heat).
I'm a little clumbsy, can't chew and listen at the same time. A trip to the local butcher results in my favorite cut on the grill. When it comes to flavor, Ribeye is king. That and a nice Amador Zinfandel or, a new favorite, Tempranillo with some grilled veggies and say hello happy place.
I don't eat steak will listening to the rig. However, I prefer dry aged ribeye, either grilled rare or Pittsburged, seasoning with S&P only.
My favorite is a bone-in ribeye. I'm a filet mignon fan too, but the bone-in ribeye is pretty much always a bigger steak. Which tastes better depends on my mood.
I try my best to cook steak as plainly as possible and eat it that way. Only an inferior grade needs seasoning and sauces IMO. Taste the meat rather than the other stuff is my motto.
I cook mine on a Weber gas grill (gotten too lazy and impatient for charcoal). I get the temp up as high as possible (600 degrees on a hot and not windy day), put the steak on for about 4 minutes a side, flipping once, with the cover down. Cooking time depends on the thickness.
I've spoken to chefs at high end steakhouses. Putting salt on the steak before cooking can draw out moisture. Makes sense to me. Fresh ground pepper is the only thing many will use before it gets cooked. A Ruth's Chris chef claimed their ovens are at 1200 degrees (or was it 1600?), which is how all the flavor really gets seared in.
I used to eat steak as rare as possible. I've gotten soft in my ripe old age of 35 and now prefer medium rare.
I used to be a prime rib fan, but my tastes have changed a bit. It's become a bit too seasoned for me in most places.
I'm not Mr. Eco-Lefty guy, and I pass on the organic marketing crap, but organic meat is the real deal. The taste is noticeably superior. This must be the flavor Elizabeth was mentioning. The animal gets no antibiotics, no steroids and eats only wild grass that is never fertilized or sprayed with anything.
Screw the process, the meat just taste noticeably superior. It's well worth the extra money...kinda like our stereo rigs.
I don't eat steak while listening but my favorite is a NY strip. A charcoal grill is the way to go. I have to say the flavor is far better than a steak cooked on a gas grill. Everyone thinks I'm crazy using charcoal instead of gas, but they also think the same that I listen to albums instead of CDs. Stay away from lighter fluid though, one of those electric charcoal starters doesn't give off that nasty fluid taste.
Yes, the ribeye is tops on my list, when cooking it on the grill, to get a good sear on the outside pat the steak dry on the outside with a paper towel, BBQ at the highest possible heat for 9 to 15 seconds on each side then put the steak on a lower-heat part of the grill, Cover and cook to desired doneness. Highly recommmend is a Klinker Brick Zinfandel(Not well known and way underpriced) and put on the Keiko Matsui Album Walls of Akendora on the stereo. Life is Good!
You can't beat a ribeye or porterhouse from Allen Brothers out of Chicago. There is a reason that many high profile steak houses use their meats!
Grass fed Hanger Steak in Ipanema, Brazil.
as a dedicated carnivore from the epicenter of beef, i'll opine that costco has the best quality (and usually best priced) meat. even their lower-end cuts (skirt, round, etc.) are great; i think it's better than the much pricier whole foods and high end purveyuors like allen brothers.. i've had a bunch of professional chefs tell me that they buy all their meat at costco; i imagine being the biggest seller gives 'em the access to the best for less. how any of this relates to audio, i know not, but it definitely makes me hungry.
The greatest invention for charcoal grilling has to be the metal chimney starter...no nasty fluid or electric needed...one sheet of newspaper in the bottom, coals in the top section, lite it & in no time you're good to go. The mad cow scare turned my wife off on beef so for years now it's been chicken, pork, sausages or wild salmon on the Smokey Joe. Fat Delmonicos from the local small meatmarket used to be our favs.
Kobe beef, before the quake. Stock up, it will never taste the same. I hear it is at $80 a pound.
the best steak is wild salmon. got your omega 3. meat can't compare to a good piece of fish.
if you forced me to eat meat it would be bison burger.
I don't eat meals while listening as it is hard to play my "air" guitar and cut meat at the same time. Even harder if I decide to cut a rug. However while watching a movie I like a nice thick rib steak medium well with a baked spud, green beans and big puddle of A1.
I find Costco has excellent meat at excellent prices. I buy all my meat there.
Proper salting is key. I find that rubbing with fresh ground black pepper 10-15 minutes before grilling then after placing on the grill sprinkle liberally with Kosher salt works well for me. Pay particular attention to the fatty parts, the eye in a ribeye and outer layer in all others.
I would advise caution salting too soon, no more than 5 minutes, as it will draw out moisture.
Used to like it "black and blue" too. But like Kbarkamian my taste has changed and now like it medium rare.
Funny, but all this talk of steak, which we like and why, and its' preparation seems eerily similar to audio!
To each his/her own and that's OK!!
Well, it appears that some people have at least as much passion about steaks as they do about music. Might be a connection..
Is it because most of us are neurotic as hell?
I think being neurotic definitely has a big part in it. My neurosis extends beyond audio (and steak), however it pretty much started when my audio obsession began.
My wife simultaneously appreciates and despises by obsession with having to research the he'll out of anything I buy. Gotta make sure it's well worth the money. For example, I had to replace my now 17 year old backpack that I bought when I first started college. Just bought a North Face backpack for $115. Why $115 for a backpack? Well, I use it every day to carry a ton of stuff - workout clothes, showering stuff, work stuff, etc., and it has a lifetime warranty. I'd rather spend $115 and have something that'll last 17 years than pay $25 for something that'll piss me off daily and need to be replaced in no more than 2 years.
Makes sense, but my wife says "Why can't you pick out a damn backpack like everyone else and be done with it, rather than research them all for no less than a month?" My response - "I want to buy it once and be done with it."
Anything over the cost of a few bucks turns into this. Neurosis? Absolutely. Rational? I think so. She never faults what I buy.
Most line cooks buy their beef at Costco because they don't make squat. Having worked the line and been a Chef at multiple establishments, I know this from personal experience.
I don't eat beef much, so I spend my money on the good stuff. I like about four weeks of dry age on my beef. Beef so old, it has a rind on it like old stinky cheese. Ah, but when you cut that rind off, the flavor underneath is so intense and sublime. Expect to pay between $$40-$100, depending on the age and cut, because of all the shrinkage and lose. I've also had Kobe and Wagyu many times.
IMHO, the only use for A1 is for polishing copper.
I don't know why.
$115 for a backpack is absolute minimum, in my opinion.
I don't use backpacks but I recently bought Victorinox shoulder travel bag that I use every day for $185. And it was on 40% off sale. Is it worth it? Probably, I'll see.
Mrtennis, "meat can't compare to a good piece of fish."
Some of us disagree. At any rate, it's not an either/or situation. I happen to love seafood as well.
Corazon, "I would advise caution salting too soon, no more than 5 minutes, as it will draw out moisture."
That is a familiar fallacy, one that I bought into as well - for 25 years no less. I was as skeptical as the next guy, but yet again, The Doctor was right. As he taught me, salting and brining are classic techniques.
Try salting your steak (sea salt, not the bitter, metallic regular table salt) the day before. And, if that's not in the cards, as far in advance on the same day as is possible.The improvement in taste, tenderness, and juiciness is such that I predict it will become part of your routine. Again, not only beef, but pork, lamb, bison, etc.
Money back if not delighted...
FedEx just delivered a box of porterhouse steaks from Lobel's of New York. These are prime dry aged steaks and the flavor is fantastic. This thread got me thinking.
I hope these steaks are as good as Mrtennis' salmon.
FedEx just delivered a box of porterhouse steaks from Lobel's of New York. These are prime dry aged steaks and the flavor is fantastic.
Rrog- Make mine on the red side of medium rare. I'll open a nice aged cabernet and be right over ;-)
unless meat is organic, free of hormones and antibiotics and if animals are grass fed, pesticides are not used,
the food value of the meat is questionable.
I bet most of you could not perform the kill. ?
One more vote for Costco, which routinely has Prime ribeyes
au contraire, Iso. My son says we are "meat-a-tarians". Meat w feet, meat w/o feet, we loves 'em all.
Hey, Rrog, that cab is gonna get all vinegary, if you don't give me your address soon.
Oops, I just killed an ant crawling in front of my stereo. That enraged me. But you know what, I am not going to eat it. That was not really hunting.
When I was a young man, I went Deer hunting with some friends once. When I shot my first and only Deer, I was required to drink the animals warm blood. It was right around the time of the Movie Red Dawn and drinking the blood of your first kill was all the rage. The blood was hot and think with a real strong minerally taste. While I have never gone hunting since then, I had a standing agreement with my hunting friends that I would butcher their kills with the understanding that I would get the scraps after the Primals were removed. I would keep the organ meats, intestines (sausage casings), shanks, scraps and the occasional Saddle. Does anybody know how much a full Deer Saddle is worth? A lot more than you would guess. I would make my own Deer sausages, blood sausages, chilli and stews from the scraps. Osso Bucco was made from the shanks and grilled lollipop chops from Saddle. Over the years I've butchered over 100 Deer. So, yes, I can and did make the kill once.
Years later I worked in a gourmet butcher shop. While I've seen cattle, pigs, sheep, and lambs killed, I've never had to clean one. However, I've put many a carcass through the band saw. In addition, I've slaughtered way too many chickens and my share of ducks.
I'm glad to say that I've not had to butcher and animal in over ten years. I still enjoy making my own sausages, cured meats and cheeses.