Unfortunately, the number of grilling days left in the Northeast are rapidly dwindling for 2011. So I splurged and bought 3-pounds of beautifully marbled porterhouse steaks (which were on sale for only $8/lb). Of course there isn’t much of a secret; a beautiful porterhouse steak will turn out fantastic every time. However, the addition of lemon and olive oil transformed this simple BBQ into a grand slam for the entire family. 5-stars.
Chris Kimball has two variations, one with garlic and another without. The two recipes are identical except for 1 clove of garlic divided among 3-1/2 pounds of beef. I added the garlic this time; which was very subtle.
- The recipe says to use a chimney starter full of 2-1/2 pounds of charcoal. But because Chris Kimball usually expresses charcoal amounts in quarts, I started out with only 2-1/2 quarts (only half the required amount). But I caught my mistake early enough to fill the already lit chimney starter. No harm done.
- Also, the recipe calls for hardwood charcoal. But because I used regular Kingsford briquettes the weight measurement was complete inaccurate anyway. Just use a full chimney starter and that’s all you need to remember. And if you don’t have a chimney starter you should definitely buy one.
- Chris Kimball also warns that if steaks start to flame up, then you should move them to cooler side of the grill and/or use a spray bottle to extinguish the flames.
How much work? Low.
How big of a mess? Low.
Start time 5:00 PM. Dinner time 6:00 PM.
Chris Kimball’s original recipe is here . The descriptions of how I cooked it today are given below.
2 T-bone steaks or porterhouse steaks, about 1-1/2″ thick
1 clove garlic , halved
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Lemon wedges for serving
- Light large chimney starter filled with hardwood charcoal. Allow to ignite until covered by fine gray ash; about 25 minutes. Put most of the coals on one side of grill and scatter the remaining coals in single layer on other side. Cover grill and preheat grate for 5 minutes, then scrape the grate clean using a wire brush.
- You may need to wait for your coals to cool a little. Wait until you can hold your hand 5″ above the grate for 3 to 4 seconds.
- While the coals ignite, pat steaks dry using paper towels. Cut the garlic clove into halves and rub it on both sides of steak. Sprinkle both sides evenly with a total of 2 teaspoons kosher salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper.
- Leaving the steaks uncovered, cook both sides over the hottest part of grill until well-browned; 3 minutes per side.
- Then move the steaks to the cooler side of grill and continue cooking, flipping half-way through, to desired doneness. Take the temperature my inserting an instant read thermometer into the side of the steak.
- Rare: 120-degrees (about 6 minutes)
- Medium-Rare: 125-degrees (about 8 minutes)
- Medium: 135-to-140-degrees (about 10 minutes)
- Medium-Well: 145-degrees (about 11 minutes)