The Tomahawk is a real king of steaks. A large extra thick ribeye steak attached to a frenched bone; this meat lollipop is seriously impressive. Ribeye gives the perfect amount of fat marbling, which is needed to give the flavour to the meat. A real celebration sharing treat, they often start being marketed around Valentine’s Day and Father’s Day but are available all year round.
This carnivores dream has become very popular recently. Up until a few years ago, a Tomahawk would have been a special request from a local butcher, however now they can be bought in most supermarkets and online for anything from £15 per kilo upwards.
But how do you cook them? We aren’t going to get into the age-old argument of how rare a steak should be cooked (but our own preference is very), more how to get the best out of what can be an expensive meal. How to really make it sing and leave yourself wondering why you had to share it after all.
This how to guide has been approved by Alfie Pupper Esq. Who, as shown below, is very interested in all things steak related.
No, we aren’t talking about what temperature to cook at, but the temperature of the steak before its cooked.
Almost more important, is the temperature you get the meat to before cooking it. Popping a fridge-cold steak on a griddle is a really bad idea, shocking the meat and making it tough.
Get your Tomahawk out at least 2 hours before cooking, if you can, and get it out of the packaging, seasoned and let it come up to room temperature for the best result. You will notice the colour of the meat change, becoming darker.
Seasoning and Aromatics
This is key to bring the flavour out but is also where you can play around and experiment once you have done the very simple base of seasoning.
First oil the steak with olive oil using your hands to massage the oil into the meat for a minute and give a thin coating. We aren’t looking to deep fry a steak here, but we also aren’t being mean.
To season, the base is equal amounts of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. You can also add garlic, thyme or even a little chilli if you wish to the seasoning mix. Massage it in on both sides and leave the steak to come up to temperature.
Firstly, you need a proper griddle. Not a grill as this will part “broil” the meat. You need a hot surface in direct contact with the meat to get the best cook, as you want to really get a difference in cooking level between the first few millimetres of meat and the centre.
We use either a hinged health grill, which is great as you have a heated plate on both sides of the meat, or a stove top cast iron griddle. The stove tops griddles can be picked up for not much money and are really useful once you season it with oil, so worth a purchase.
Get your griddle smoking hot before putting the steak on it. You want a sizzle when the oiled Tomahawk hits the hot metal, plus you want to form a crust on the outside of the meat and get the fat to render into the muscle to release the flavour.
How much you cook it is up to you (we like rare as it can be) but try to turn it as little as possible.
This is the most important step. It is also the part that is most commonly missed. Understandable in many ways, there is now the smell of seasoned steak filling the kitchen, who isn’t going to be desperate to get it eaten. Resting for 10 minutes allows the juices to return back into the fibres and will give a lovely tender result, and the perfect Tomahawk steak.
Enjoy your king of steaks!