The top round steak is a sub-primal beef cut, obtained from the rear leg of the cow. It is a preferred cut due to its versatility in preparation, whereby you can grill, pan-fry, or roast it. The top round steak is also ideal for ground meat, which you may use for patties.
Grilled top round steak is a popular delicacy that goes well with various spices and sauces. If you love grilled steak, there is a high chance that you want to know how to grill it. We will show you how to, and also take you through the critical steps of its preparation. Read along.
Preparing Your Steak
Before hitting the grill, there is the preparation stage. Start by picking an excellent chunk of steak from your butcher. You will notice that this sub-primal beef cut is very lean, lacking fat.
It is advisable to get one that has some marbling for it to grill well. Once you have the perfect cut of round steak, it is time to marinate it.
Marinating Your Top Round Steak
Marinating the steak will give it some flavor and make it soft. It is an optional process, but you should not skip it if you want the best-tasting steak. Butterfly the steak before dipping it into the marinade.
Butterflying refers to cutting steak across its edge to make it thinner. This helps the marinade sink into the tissues adequately and also quickens grilling.
You can opt for a homemade marinade. Here, you mix vinegar, salt, pepper, chilies, garlic, and other preferred spices. The other option is using a premade marinade, which is ready to use.
Adolph’s meat tenderizing marinade is a great pick. It contains a rich blend of spices like sugar, salt, paprika, pepper, caramel, and bromelain. This marinade will work well with other meat dishes like pork, lamb, or poultry.
After putting the meat in the marinade, put it in the fridge for at least an hour.
Applying Rub to the Steak
If you want a unique taste, rubbing the steak will do fine. The Kosmos Q cow cover BBQ rub will give the steak a nice savor to complement the marinade. You may make the beef rub at home. In this case, you need kosher salt, brown sugar, paprika, and pepper. Add more spices as you like to get the desired taste.
Dab the steak from the marinade with paper towels to remove the moisture. Apply the rub in a massaging motion on both sides of the round steak. A binder like olive oil, butter, or mayonnaise comes in handy to prevent the rub from falling off.
Ready the Grill
Start the grill and give it some time to preheat. If you are using a charcoal grill, add flavored wood pellets or chunks to improve the meat’s smack. For beef, hickory and mesquite are good options.
Let the grill preheat for roughly 5-7 minutes before you introduce the steak.
Grilling the Top Round Steak
The 2-zone grilling method is one to try out for a juicy dish. In this case, you divide the grill into two zones; hot and cold. Start by grilling the beef cut in the cold zone, which should be around 225-degrees Fahrenheit.
Grilling on the cold zone ensures that it cooks properly in the interior. Turn it occasionally for uniform doneness. Check its temperature using a thermometer to make sure that it is ready.
When it meets the required temperature threshold, transfer it to the hot zone. The main purpose of the hot zone is to give it a crust. It also helps in the caramelization of the steak, giving it a nutty flavor and brown color.
How to Prevent the Steak from Drying
Top round steak has a low-fat content; as such, it is prone to drying when grilling. Dry grilled beef has a fibrous feeling on your palate. To maintain the cut’s juices, do not grill it past medium, preferably medium-rare.
Here, do not cook it past 145-degrees Fahrenheit. You can use a smoking or grill thermometer for accurate readings.
You can also mop the meat on the grill. Mopping refers to wetting the steak using a thin liquid. Tomato juice is the standard ingredient for mopping liquid. Add vinegar and a dash of cooking wine, which promotes its caramelization.
Use a barbecue brush to scoop the liquid and apply it to the beef cut. Ensure to do it consistently to prevent drying.
Use a Wet Rub
Rubbing is one step you cannot afford to miss when preparing the steak for the grill. There are two rubs; wet and dry. In the case of a top round steak, use a wet rub as it won’t draw much of the meat’s juices and will help the ingredients adhesion on the grill.
You may use olive oil, lime juice, or mayonnaise for the wet rub, which will act as a binder – as earlier hinted. The binders act as a buffer against direct heat from the grill that can dry up the meat.
The steak is ready! You now have to serve it. It is best if you let it rest for some minutes before serving. The time allowance allows the steak to absorb some of the savors from the mopping liquid and the rub.
Slice it to desired sizes, with an accompaniment of your choice like bread, rice, or mashed potatoes. You can further braise it to get a smoky stew.
Top round steak is a great starting point to test your grilling skills. It is a lean meat with minimal fat, allowing you to grasp the preparation of simple meat cuts.
Despite grilling being a simple affair, you need to be careful, lest it dries, leaving you with a leathery cut of beef. Follow the highlighted steps to up your barbecuing game.
Also, pay more attention in the preparation stages, where you introduce your marinade and rub. Patience is key in preparation if you want to get the ideal tang from the different spices. Do not forget to mop the steak while on the grill for its juiciness.