Going through the list of All-American grilling items for Fourth of July, I was coming up short with ground not already covered. Ribs, chicken, sausage, and, to a lesser extent, hamburgers have all had their day in the sun. So if it wasn't going to be something different, it was going to be something bigger, because that's the American way. I went to the butcher and let the patriot in me pick out the largest slab of beef, a 1 1/2" thick porterhouse, brought it home and grilled it up, then topped it off with a blue cheese butter (that's a red, white, and blue steak for those of you keeping track).
The thick porterhouse presented a grilling challenge to get it perfectly medium rare without charring the outside. To get this cut right I had to build a two zone fire, with a all the coals stacked up on one side of the charcoal grate, keeping the other side empty. This allowed me to sear the steak to perfection on each side, then move it over to cooler area of the grill to finish up without the worry of burning. A steak this beautiful did not need anything to make it better, but the blue cheese butter added a tang that complemented the beef without overpowering it, creating a pleasing layer of depth to the meal. At the end of this gluttonous feast I felt like a perfectly grilled, over sized piece beef is something we can all stand behind, making us proud to be and American, or at the very least, an extremely full American.
Porterhouse Steak with Blue Cheese Butter
Adapted from Cooks Illustrated
- 4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
- 3 tablespoons blue cheese
- 1 small shallot, minced
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
- 1 small garlic glove, minced
- 2 Porterhouse steaks, 1 1/2" thick
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
Season the steaks liberally with salt and pepper and allow it to come to room temperature while preparing the grill.
Light a chimney 3/4 full of charcoal. While the charcoal is lighting, mix the butter, blue cheese, shallot, parsley, and garlic together in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
When charcoal is fully lit and covered in gray ash, pour coals out and arrange them on one side of the charcoal grate, keeping the other side empty. Scrub and oil the grill grate.
Grill the steaks directly over the coals for 6 minutes on each side, with the tenderloin portion of the steaks always facing the cooler side of the grill. Move the steaks to the cool side of the grill with the bone side facing the fire. Cover and continue to cook until desired doneness (about 6 additional minutes for medium-rare), flipping halfway through cooking. Remove steaks from the grill and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Top each steak with the blue cheese butter mixture and serve.