Reverse searing is an unconventional grilling method that seems to be growing in popularity every year. Traditionally, when searing, you place your protein over a scorching hot heat source (such as an infrared burner) to crisp the outside, followed by a slow roast to get the internal temperature up to desired doneness. It's a tried and true method of cooking, one that's been around since barbecuing became a staple in the backyard.
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The new method on the block, called reverse searing, essentially flips this process on its head. You start grilling your protein low and slow until it gets to an internal temperature of about 90°F-100°F (For medium-rare / medium), and then you finish the process by grilling the meat at those high searing temperatures to get that mouth watering, crunchy and crisp exterior.
Some of the noted benefits of reverse searing include:
- No more hot spots - more even cooking throughout
- Top quality crisp
- Larger window for perfection
- Tenderness and Flavor
Lets talk about those points for a hot minute, because there are probably some pit masters out there screaming they make the perfect steak when they sear conventionally, and you know what, they're probably right! Conventional searing has been around forever for a reason, however, it's incredibly tough to perfect.
So, lets discuss these benefits.
No More Hot Spots
When you place your protein over searing temperatures at the beginning of the cook, that heat transferred throughout the protein extremely quick, thus leaving room for inconsistencies throughout. Ever had a steak that was perfect one bite and raw the next? Starting the cook at a low temperature gives the heat time to slowly and evenly transfer throughout the entire piece of protein, leaving you with a perfectly cooked, juicy meal. A great way to make sure you're getting the perfect steak every time is to grab yourself an Instant Read Thermometer.
Top Quality Crisp
When we're searing protein, especially steak, our ultimate goal is to get that mouth watering crispy exterior to blend with that pink juicy interior. Now, you can get a fantastic crisp on a traditional sear as well, but we're here to tell you, it can be done better. By starting the cooking process low and slow, you're effectively evaporating the moisture on the exterior of the protein before the sear begins. This lets those higher temperatures do the leg work on the browning stage of the cook, leaving you with a high quality, crispy exterior.
Larger Window For Perfection
When you're cooking your protein to a precise internal temperature, the higher the heat you're cooking it at, the smaller the window you have of hitting it. When you start searing at the beginning, leaving the meat on a pinch too long can leave you with leather, or taking it off too quick can leave it "mooing." When you start the process low and slow, you have a larger window to get your temperature up to desired doneness, leaving the finishing touches and the crisp till the end at those searing temperatures.
Tenderness and Flavor
One of the last (but certainly not least) benefits of reverse searing is that with the lower temperatures and slower cook, it gives your protein enzymes more time to break down and develop a larger flavor profile.
If you have any more questions regarding reverse searing, barbecue or anything barbecue related, just ask a question in our chat feature. You can also visit any of our 5 locations across Canada to talk to our experts. We have two locations in Alberta with our Calgary North and Calgary South locations, as well as 3 across the GTA: Burlington, Oakville & Etobicoke, Ontario.