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View Full Version : Steak Temperature Test - Discussion of Physical Approach



Don Nguyen
12-27-2013, 11:58 AM
http://i.imgur.com/nUEH4uE.jpg

So... what are your thoughts?

knyfeknerd
12-27-2013, 12:11 PM
I would opt for a temp gauge over this method. I've never worked anywhere that this was used. After cooking enough proteins, you learn the proper touch feel for each one. Keep in mind that not all cuts are the same. The center cut of a tenderloin will feel much differently than the head or tail.
I also might add that all people's hands aren't the same too!

NO ChoP!
12-27-2013, 12:21 PM
Been running grills for many years. After a while you just know, from appearance; no touch, no gauge. Haven't had an overcooked steak ever; really. Out of literally tens of thousands. A few under here and there....

JDA_NC
12-27-2013, 12:28 PM
Everyone has a different idea of temperatures. To me (and a lot of folks), that 'medium' is more med well, the med rare is more medium etc. One thing you'll learn after cooking hundreds of steaks is that you can't please everyone. What is under for someone could be over for another. I always cook on the more rare side anyways because it's easier/better to temp up someone's steak than to fire a whole new one.

And the hand thing is just a good guideline for someone who is new to temping steaks. All steaks feel different depending on the cut, size, and how long it's been rested. What side was on heat etc. The best way to get a feel for them is to cook a lot of them and feel your steaks continuously as they're cooking.

There are visual cues as well. Proteins that are medium and over will start to 'purge' - liquid/blood will start to be drawn to the surface

Zwiefel
12-27-2013, 01:25 PM
I would opt for a temp gauge over this method. I've never worked anywhere that this was used. After cooking enough proteins, you learn the proper touch feel for each one. Keep in mind that not all cuts are the same. The center cut of a tenderloin will feel much differently than the head or tail.
I also might add that all people's hands aren't the same too!

:plus1: I used a thermometer for years. I would press the protein with my index finger, make a judgment about doneness, then take a temp and see how I did. after a few hundred times I got it dialed in across a variety of products.

Bill13
12-27-2013, 01:56 PM
I've tried the press test and for me it's been hit or miss. I don't cook steaks often enough to trust it so I use a Thermapen. I have learned going in from the side works better than from the top down.

Mrmnms
12-27-2013, 02:42 PM
http://i.imgur.com/nUEH4uE.jpg

So... what are your thoughts?

I used to use this basic method as a start for new guys. For well done, I would tap them on the forehead . Different cuts respond slightly differently .

JHunter
12-27-2013, 02:45 PM
Better then sticking a probe in a steak and letting all the goods out but as already stated not entirely reliable

franzb69
12-27-2013, 11:47 PM
practice practice practice. =D

i'm pretty decent with guesstimating steak doneness.

i'm with no chop, after a while you just know.

Crothcipt
12-29-2013, 01:51 PM
I just noticed there isn't a me on the chart. That med. Is definitely mw.

CoqaVin
12-29-2013, 01:59 PM
I just noticed there isn't a me on the chart. That med. Is definitely mw.

after working the grill you just know as No Chop said some people are amazed that you can tell by just touching it not me I know when a steak or burger is done to temp never had a complaint

Geo87
12-29-2013, 11:03 PM
I would say the hand chart is a bit off. It should be From top to bottom rare, med rare, medium, med well, well .

In saying that this chart method is a pretty rough method.

A meat thermometer is the most accurate gauge, although nothing beats experience. You can really tell a lot by looking at colour and juices and definitely feel.

Please note that a rested steak and a steak straight from the oven feel completely different. This confuses some :)

Crothcipt
12-30-2013, 03:19 AM
after working the grill you just know as No Chop said some people are amazed that you can tell by just touching it not me I know when a steak or burger is done to temp never had a complaint

I agree. Cooking for 20 years I can usually tell when a med it med. Also I have noticed in some places that chart is about right for the area. One place posted the temps on the menu, and it pretty much lined up with that chart.

Geo87
12-30-2013, 03:39 AM
Sorry to clarify I meant the hand chart should be slightly different. Not the steak pictures.

A raw steak will not spring back when touched
A rare will...just. There for hand fig #1 = rare

If your skin doesn't spring back when touched you gotta problem ! :)

jamaster14
02-13-2014, 02:58 PM
http://i.imgur.com/nUEH4uE.jpg

So... what are your thoughts?

this works ok for a 1" or so cut of meat. less so for thicker cuts... when i was tough it was using a thermometer to see the temp and then using my finger to feel what that temp feels like... and eventually it bacame basically just a muscle memory thing. you know what it feels like over time with experience for each cut. but a 2" steak and a 3/4" steak that are both medium wont have the same resistance.