What is hanger steak?
Hanger steak is full-flavoured, rich and inexpensive. Like skirt steak, hanger steak has a slightly grainy, thready texture. This cut of beef tastes best when cooked to medium-rare or medium, as this prevents the meat from becoming tough. Hanger steak tastes delicious with salt and pepper seasoning or your favourite rub/marinade. The beefy flavour is strong, so it won’t be lost in any extra flavourings that you add.
How to prepare hanger steak
Before cooking your hanger steak, you first need to trim it (unless you bought it trimmed from your butcher). You can start by removing the silverskin and excess fat from the exterior with a sharp boning knife. Slide the knife under the silverskin, grab the skin with your free hand, and then carefully pull the knife under it (taking off as little meat as possible!). Eventually, you’ll have a piece of meat with two muscles attached by a thick sinew that runs down the centre. Cut the steak in half along the sinew to separate the meat into 2 hanger steaks, then trim each one down, and you’re ready for cooking! See a video of a hanger steak being prepared here.
How to cook hanger steak
Pan sear then roast
Preheat your oven to about 200ºC.
Heat a large fry pan until very hot – ideally, use a pan that is cast iron or not non-stick, as this will produce better browning and nice caramelised flavour. Add a couple of teaspoons of oil or butter, and saute the steak for 1-2 minutes each side, until you get a nice brown surface. Relocate the steak to the oven and roast for 5-7 minutes.
Follow the pan instructions above. Saute the steak for 3 minutes each side if you like rare, or 4 minutes each side if you like medium-rare. Baste with the hot oil/melted butter a couple of times as the steak cooks.
Fire up the grill. Rub the steak with oil, salt and pepper, and place it on the grill. If you are using a charcoal grill, wait until the coals get ashy before you start cooking the meat. The steaks will only take a few minutes on each side until they are done.
- Hanger steak tastes best medium-rare or medium. Because of the coarse texture and amount of grain, hanger steak becomes tough and chewy when overcooked. Ideally, use a meat thermometer and cook the meat to approximately 60-65°C.
- Because these steaks are quite thin, they require high heat in order to develop a nice char/sear without overcooking.
Let it rest + slice against the grain
Once your steak is cooked, let it rest for 10 minutes (loosely covered), as this will redistribute the meat juices. When you cut your steak for serving, make sure to slice it against the grain, as this will ensure tender texture. Watch this video if you need a hand slicing against the grain.
We hope you enjoy your hanger steak experience!