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having trouble with TREX - please help - need the BEST results possible

edited 10:44AM in EggHead Forum
i've been cutting 2-inch thick ribeyes & NY Strips.
the initial sear on a large produces a huge fireball - i need to do at least 5-6 at a time, so i can't use a mini or smaller sized cooker. all the lump is going hot and when the steaks go on, the entire thing lights up like a huge fireball and the steaks are engulfed in flame. i keep the lid open. do the 2 minutes on each side then let them rest 20+ minutes. its so hot i can barely use long tongs to flip and remove the steaks. all seems ok up to this point.[p]my problem is that the finish takes forever. the grill may be about 400 and i can put them on, flip them and the thermapen still reads 110 on the inside. its taking forever for them to get done. i add some wood and keep them on with the lid closed and flip them, but it still takes way more than the TREX recipe of 4-5 minutes per side.[p]i'm thinking of making the steaks thinner - next round will be 1.75 inches. friends have really liked these and the crust (just salt,pepper with mustard base) is nice and flavorful, but i think they are coming out a bit burnt because of the time they are on. and i'm getting tired of people cutting the steak open and me having to put them back on because they are rare.[p]can anyone give me advice on how to tweak my method to make the best steaks ever?[p]thanks a lot!
jim wilson


  • CT GrillguyCT Grillguy Posts: 149
    steak lover,[p]I do the T-Rex method alot so let me see if I can help out a bit.[p]Make sure you're letting the meat warm up before you cook it. I really should sit out for at least an hour. This will make a huge difference in overall cooking time and doneness. [p]If you don't like the amount of char you're getting, don't sear for 2 mins a side. T-Rex says that 2 mins is the top end of the sear time. Try 90 seconds a side. 60 seconds will still do the job if you really don't want char.[p]Hope this helps.[p]I love the method!!
  • Dos HuevosDos Huevos Posts: 368
    CT Grillguy,[p]Mad Max has a good guideline for charring / searing. 30 seconds per half inch of thickness per side. Ergo, 1.5 inch think steak gets 90 seconds per side.[p]Also, if your steaks not over an inch thick, it really doesn't pay to trex. I've found that unless you like it well done, you're better off just cooking steaks of that thickness or less at about 500 or so...
  • SandbaggerSandbagger Posts: 977
    <p />steak lover, I believe you just need more practice and think about taking notes on each cook. That way you can zero in on your specific method for Trexing. After a while, it will become old hat. [p]Here are a couple suggestions. Get a pair of welding gloves and longer tongs. I bet a beer, you are opening the egg up way to often, which plays with temps and flare ups. I find about 1 inch thick steaks are perfect. [p]When I cook em, I sear near the lump (high temps without nuking the egg) and finish high in the egg. I don't do the rest, after searing, I shut down the egg and drop the steaks on the raised grid. It is just the method that works best for me. Keep practicing and you will find your perfect steak method. [p]Tom

  • CT Grillguy,[p]hi, and thank you for the reply.[p]i can easily leave them out longer to warm up. i think its possible they have gone on as quick as 30 minutes before. [p]what about them being so rare still? we check them and know the grill is super hot its amazing that its only 110 inside when we stick it with the thermapen - and thats easily 10 minutes into the 2nd phase (although keeping notes as was suggested will certainly help). if I char less, then doesn't that imply i will have to leave them on even longer during the 2nd phase?[p]for 1.75inch thick, how long is your experience for the finish?
    and is that with the lid closed?[p]thanks again

  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 23,020
    steak lover,
    the times for searing and roasting are guidelines only. when searing i go by looks, and the roasting is done by internal temps. if your taking the steaks off and your thermapen says they are 110 inside, they are not cooked. try taking them off when the internal reads 130 for your next cook. then you can make adjustments up or down depending on how rare you want them. if you want to speed up the grilling times, one trick that was posted a ways back is to put them in a ziplock and submerge them in warm water for a half hour or so, you will get a more uniformly cooked steak this way

  • Photo EggPhoto Egg Posts: 7,907
    steak lover,
    A 30 min. warm up period on a 2" steak is not much.
    That Thermapen you have works great to measure food before you cook as well. It will not do you any good to take notes on all your cooking times, (sear, rest and final) if your not controlling and checking your pre cook temp. Kind of like checking milage on a tank of gas not knowing how much gas you had to start with each time.
    Even a bad steak is better than hamburger helper....

    Thank you,

    Galveston Texas
  • CT GrillguyCT Grillguy Posts: 149
    steak lover,[p]Them being rare is a direct result of being too cold when you started the sear. If you let the meat just sit on your counter for 60 mins before you cook, you'll get a much better result with a 2 inch thick steak. I have not checked the internal temp of a steak before I grill it, so can't help you with a number to look for, but 60 mins should be fine.[p]And like Sandbagger said, don't open the lid too often. You gotta trust it.
  • fishlessman,
    Gasket question. I fried my gasket last night, I called BGE and asked about there new improved one and they are working on improving the adhesive . Waht kind do you have on your eggs and what do you reccommend?
    I enjoy the pic's you post.
    The trout are running at the bay.
    360 guy-gary

  • steak lover,[p]I usually cook 2" filets (maybe thicker), and often I wrap mine in bacon. So I'm with you on size, and I usually do 4 at a time. Over the weekend of the 4th I did 6. I usually let mine sit on the counter for at least 30 minutes if I can remember. Here is my method:[p]1. Start with a blazing hot fire and a full load of lump. 750 degrees or higher. I usually take the daisy off, and have the bottom vent wide open. Lava.[p]2. Open lid carefully, toss on the steaks. CLOSE THE LID. I go 2.5 - 3 minutes.[p]3. Open lid carefully, flip steaks, close the lid, and wait for 2.5 - 3 more minutes.[p]4. Open the lid, move steaks to container of choice (I use a pyrex baking dish), and cover with foil.[p]5. Shut down the egg - I close the bottom vent, and put the daisy on with a tiny-tiny crack. Sometime's I'll just put the rain cap on - I doubt it matters.[p]6. After 15-20 minutes (if a lot of juice from the steak is in the pan, I put them back on sooner rather than later), set the lower vent to about 1/2 inch, open just the holes on the daisy, carefully open the egg, and put back on the steaks. Usually I'm around 400-425 at this point[p]7. I generally check my steaks in 5 minute intervals, opening the egg to check each steak with the thermapen til they hit 135 (medium-rarish). Rarely does the egg temp go over 425.[p]Over July 4th, all six filets only took 10 minutes after the rest. Other times they take 20-25 minutes. The only things I can think of to attribute the differences in time are:[p]- Not letting them sit out for a long period before cooking.
    - Not covering with foil during the rest
    - Having more steaks closer together in the container during the rest, so their combined heat helps them to continue cooking during the rest. Two steaks always seem to take longer than 6 or 8.[p]Hope this helps![p]- Mike[p][p][p]

  • Charcoal Mike and CT:[p]awesome... i NEVER thought about covering with foil... i thought the issue was to let them cool because we wanted expansion/contraction going on. if i keep them hot, then i figured the TREX-ing method wouldn't be working as well. I always try to spread them out and have them vent heat.[p]on my next cook, i'll pack them in and keep them warm PLUS make sure I have them up towards room temp by leaving them out of the fridge for an hour.[p]also, NEVER heard of the 'warming them up in a bag' method - that is way cool also![p]thank you
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 23,020
    360 guy,
    one egg i have is pretty wavy and it has had a rutland on it for a couple of years. the other two are seriously burnt but i run them anyways, infact, i was looking at the one at camp this weekend and the gasket is not there anymore, burnt completely away. if the egg seals well enough without a gasket to do low and slows, then i dont see a reason for one unless your prone to dropping the dome. if you need one, i would wait till bge has the newer one ready for production and sales

  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    steak lover,
    sear with the lid closed.[p]all that extra O2 with the lid open aloows the fat to ignite. it won't flare with the lid down

    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • steak lover,[p]I first started covering in foil simply to keep the bugs away during the rest period - but I think it definitely helps to hold in the heat, and speed up cooking. Other folks may chime in with a different observation.[p]The biggest advantage I have see to the rest period is the following:
    When I cooked steaks before I started using the rest period, you could *SEE* how the steak was being cooked, especially on larger ones. On a 2" steak, there would be a 1/4" well done portion on the edges, medium for the next portion, and only the center was the medium-rare I was shooting for. This was happening because I was leaving the steaks on the grill as I turned down the heat, and it continued to cook the meat as the temp was coming down. Go eat a steak at a buddies house that still cooks on a gasser or that doesn't use the rest and you will be abls to see.[p]However, now that I do the rest, you can tell a HUGE difference. Only the very outer edges are cooked heavily due to the sear, and the other 95% (all of it) is a perfect medium-rare. What heat is left when you pull them off the egg isn't much, but you are only shooting for 135 internal which really isn't that high, so they do cook a bit in the container. So it can go up a few degrees overall, but it's still a bake instead of a sear. So once it goes back on the egg at a lower temp, you just finish baking the steak til it hits the temp you want, and it will be a nice medium-rare all the way through.[p]I can tell you that I can't tell the difference in the quality of the finished product with or without the foil - the only difference is the amount of time on the egg after the rest. If you can keep the bugs away or just carry them back inside, a longer bake time on the egg = 1 more beer.[p]Hope that makes sense. :-)[p]- Mike

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