How Long Do You Marinate Steaks
The process of marinating meat produces some beautifully tasting and succulent results achieved through the use of liquids, seasonings, spices and oils. But just how long do you marinate meat to achieve the best results?
This very much depends on the effect you are trying to achieve and indeed how intense the flavour you are looking for and the type and size of the meat you are looking to marinate. To give you an idea of how to marinate meats below is a basic steak marinade to get you started. This marinade produces two notable effects on the meat. Firstly, the seasonings and liquids (especially acidic juices, lemon juice for example) used will help to break down the proteins in the meat and thus making it more tender. Secondly given the marinade will actually draw itself into the steaks it will infuse the meat proteins with the flavours and aromas of the marinades you apply.
Marinading steaks is a great method of tenderizing otherwise cheaper cuts of steak such which can at times be somewhat tough. Rump steak is the primary example to this and if marinading steaks then other cuts such as topside steaks, can also be used in this process.
Basic steak marinade
Juice of one large Lemon
Half a teaspoon freshly cracked pepper
Half a teaspoon of coarse salt (use a course good quality sea salt)
Zest of the Lemon used for the juice (cut the Lemon zest off with a knife in strips)
2 whole cloves of garlic crushed with the back of a knife (leave the skin on, you just need to break open the clove to release the flavour)
Handful of freshly chopped parsley
Handful of fresh Basil chopped
1/4 pint of fresh good quality olive oil
The presence of Lemon juice and salt really penetrate the steaks and infuse the flavours into the meat providing you with a balanced fresh tasting and above all, tender steak using this marinade recipe. You can of course change the ingredients to suit your own tastes adding more herbs for example. The longer you can leave the steaks in the marinade the better, overnight will give you the best results leaving in the fridge during this time and turning to ensure the steaks are coated as much as you can.
You can either use a plastic bag to hold the steak and marinade or use a glass bowl covered.