Wednesday, March 20, 2013

What Is Hanger Steak Butcher's Best Kept Secret @linecook knows

Hanger Steak by Linecook on Instagram
This is a photo of Hanger Steak Dinner, from LineCook on Instagram. 
Found it from  @linecook on Twitter

Ah.... the Hanger Steak 

Who out there is family with hanger steak? It may be something you have never heard of and rightfully so, since there are reportedly only two steaks in any given steer that can be labeled as "hanger steaks" and that's if you can find them anywhere near you. 

What is it?

According to Hoofty Primal, "It's the best kept secret of butchers for centuries. The hanger steak comes from the skirt or plate of the steer, which is located just forward of the flank. "  Wikipedia refers to it as "hanging from the diaphragm of the steer."  Thus, the name, hanger steak.

Why is it so hard to find?

My wife has never found a hanger steak in Giant or any other grocery store and we had a bet that such a steak existed (she lost.) According to Wikipedia some butchers prefer to keep this cut of meat for themselves.

Now my pals in South Texas will know exactly what this is--it's labeled as a hanger steak and they are widely used in Mexican dishes like fajitas.

The problem is, hanger steak was not really popular at first, and reportedly "separated" so makes you wonder if they basically sold them as skirt steaks. Have you ever bought a skirt steak and made fajitas, it's tender and juicy but the next one you prepared the same way was hard and tough? The first steak could have been a cut of skirt that included the hanger steak cut. Don't think you were duped, just consider that a free bonus.

What's more confusing? In Britain they do call the hanger cut a skirt steak.  I can just hear Gordon Ramsey now "The BLEEPING SKIRT STEAK" ....  It was sometimes called a flap steak but that  is technically incorrect. It's not really a flank either.........

Characteristics of the Hanger Steak

Although the skirt steak is very close as in right next door to the hanger steak, the skirt steak is a bit tougher due to more muscles wherein the hanger steak is more lean, juicy, and tender.  Hanger steak is easy to marinate, season, dry rub or trim, and full of flavor.  

Locate One Today

  • Ask your local butcher for this cut. 
  • Buy it online at Hoofty Primal.
  • Go to the Latino district and shop in their butcher section.
Hanger Steak Recipes I Love: 

Hanger Steak Mushrooms and Red Wine Sauce (Bon Appetit)

Pan Grilled Hanger Steak at Epicurious

Rachael Ray Steak Fajitas!

**More about Hoofty Primal:  They specialize in sourcing the best quality meats for people who want a healthy choice. They focus on craftsman based farms who care about the animals, the land, and their customers. An Organic way of raising the animals with GMO-Free food makes for their "Hoofty Seal of Approval."

Big Fat Daddy's Archive