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How to Grill a Porterhouse Steak
The Porterhouse is really the Mack Daddy of the steakhouse and is truly not as daunting to grill as you would think. These steaks are big enough for a couple people (or one really hungry person), plus it’s two-steaks-in-one! A nice big piece of tenderloin (a.k.a. filet mignon) on one side of the T-bone and delicious New York Strip on the other.
I seasoned this Porterhouse with my own steak seasoning blend (recipe at the end of this post) and then topped it off with a big hunk of blue cheese and chive compound butter (1 stick butter + 2 tablespoons blue cheese + 1 tablespoon chives). :-)
A Porterhouse is essentially a huge T-Bone steak with a much larger piece of tenderloin. Both steaks are cut from the short loin section of the beef. As I mentioned before, the Porterhouse has a much larger potion of the tenderloin. In fact, the USDA requires that the tenderloin portion must be at least 1 1/4-inches thick at it’s widest point to be called a Porterhouse.
How To Grill A Porterhouse Steak
I like my Porterhouse to be somewhere between 1 1/2- to 2-inches thick. When you go to buy your Porterhouse, or any steak for that matter, look for consistent marbling thought the steak – the fat is what gives the meat its flavor and juicy tenderness. Trim away the excess fat along the outside of the steak. The outer fat isn’t going to really give the steak more flavor, but will cause flare-ups as it grips into the fire. Personally, I like to leave a little.
Remove the steak from the refrigerator an hour before grilling to take the chill off the meat; because they are such a thick cut, this will help them cook more evenly.
Season the meat with generous amounts of kosher salt at least 45 minutes before grilling. This gives the salt enough time to flavor the meat and is what gives that great crust on a well-cooked steak. Any less time than 45 minutes after salting, you will taste the salt instead of a well seasoned steak. This is also the time to add any other seasonings — I seasoned this one with some of my steak season blend (recipe at the bottom of the post).
Set up your grill for direct heat grilling over high heat 30 minutes before cooking. Leave a cool-zone with low to no heat to move the steaks to if they are cooking too fast or flaring up. Right before grilling, brush the grates with a neutral oil to prevent sticking.
Drizzle the steaks with olive oil (not extra virgin) to promote the heat transfer that is going to deliver a great sear and professional-looking grill marks. Lay the steaks at a 45-degree angle over the hot grates on the grill and cook for 3 minutes.
Lift with tongs (not a fork) and rotate the steaks 90-degrees (think 10 and 2 on a clock face) and cook for another 3 minutes for cross-hatch steakhouse grill marks. Flip steaks and repeat.
The steaks should be medium-rare at around 12 minutes, but use an instant read thermometer to cook the steaks your desired temperature.
COOKS NOTE: only cook the steaks to a maximum of medium doneness (135° to 140°F) over direct heat. If you really need to cook your steaks past medium, move the steaks to the cool side of the grill and close the grill cover to finish cooking without overcooking the outside. Remember carryover cooking will increase the final temperature about 5°F once the steaks leave the grill.
Always rest the meat for 7 or 8 minutes before serving or cutting to let the juices redistribute throughout the steak.
Makes about ½ cup
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt or coarse sea salt
- 1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon granulated garlic
- 1 tablespoon granulated onion
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds, crushed
- 2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon celery seed