Tuesday, April 20, 2010

In Search of...A Great Piece of Meat

After yesterday's post about my dismal failure making a steak and my inability to find a good piece of meat here in the south of France, I've decided to launch a new project. Sort of like Leonard Nimoy's old series...In Search Of  minus all the paranormal stuff.

But this needs to be a collaborative effort. First things first. Find the best cut of meat...okay, the best cut I can afford. From my readers in France, I need your help. Where do you buy it, what do you ask for, how do you cook it? I just know it's out there somewhere! Anybody who can aid me in this search is invited over for dinner on the terrace accompanied by a lovely bottle of Chateauneuf du Pape.

My followers in other countries...please give me your tips on how to make a Great Steak on the barbeque grill. Share with me some insight on how to achieve perfection...or close. Do you use spices, or oil, or is it all in the cooking technique?  What kind of coals do I need? Who do you know that makes an exquisite steak....I need names and email addresses! Anyone with great suggestions is also invited over for dinner under the midnight blue sky of Aix en Provence...complete with a thorough tour of my lovely city.

And so the quest begins. I'm serious here! Please join me...In Search Of...A Great Piece of Meat. If we do this right, maybe we'll get picked up by the A&E network!



  1. Do you have a Lidl near you? I sometimes buy their pack of marinaded beef steaks (kept in the freezer section). I think it's Argentinian beef and they are usually perfect - but not in a regular fried steak way, more a moist marinaded steak way.

  2. I have no suggestions, but I'm still coming over to sit on your terrace and enjoy that bottle of Chateauneuf du Pape.

  3. How about asking Scott?? scottsinz@yahoo.com. He is actually better at chicken on the grill, but he may have some technical answers for you like what kind of coals, when to put the steak on and how long to leave it there. Oh yeah, and how to marinade it. And actually Garrett has a real keen sense for food. His email is not working these days, but you could call him at 715-505-0008. He is off the next two days. Call after noon our time. He would LOVE to hear from you. I hate cooking beef, too. I don't even like eating it. I'd rather have pork!!!


  4. Oh I love this!

    Okay. Even though I'm "here", I will ask around for some great meat cooking tips and get back to you.


  5. The only steak I buy in France is Tournedos. It is the closest I can get to a fillet steak, I just season it, and wack it on the grill until it's a point. Mmmm delicious!

  6. Julie: I didn't know what a Lidl was so I looked it up and there is one here. I'll have to get there when I can find a friend with a car. Thanks.
    Holly: Of course, my terrace is your terrace. My Aix is your Aix!
    Vicky: There's some sort of weird irony in asking the brother of the ex-pectorant how to cook a steak. But I love the idea and will write him. I will also send a message to Garret via facebook.
    Moxie: Thank you. I'm working on gathering real prizes but offer always holds for dinner on the terrace.
    Dash: On the way to the butcher now. And "wack it on the grill". Now that's the way to treat a steak! I'm on it armed with choices and some recipes!

  7. Dear Delana,

    Regarding you wanting to comment further on my blog about my Dad and secrets. I would love to hear from you. Please send me an email to joannab2@q.com


  8. Jeff has some suggestions:

    Do the French even have the same cuts of meat as we do?

    Chopped fresh garlic, salt, pepper rub - let it sit for an hour or two wrapped in aluminum foil. Use hardwood charcoal on the grill. Mound the charcoal in the center of the grill, light and let it burn until it's ash on the outside (glowing white). Spread charcoal unevenly over the bottom of the grill, so that it's hotter in one area than the other. Put the steaks over the hotter part of the grill for a minute on each side searing the meat. Then move the steaks off to the cooler side of the grill and cook to your preference, flipping the steaks only once.
    Top with pan sauteed mushrooms, onions and butter.

    Ok, so that's that.

  9. Okay, I've asked around and here's what I got . . .

    1. garlic (lots of it!)
    2. the best meat-cooking-method includes a . . .(drum role please) . . . cast iron pan!

    Apparently, you let it get really hot, add your butter and let that get brown, and then (and only then) do you add your meat.
    Not b-b-q advice, I know. But worth knowing . . .


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