Hanger steak runs deep with flavor. It’s a very common cut of beef in France and is found in most every bistro in Paris, yet it can be difficult to find in North America. You will also see this cut called onglet and even butcher’s steak (presumably because the butcher is smart enough to keep this steak for him or herself).
Hanger Steak is sometimes found in butcher shops cut into single serving portions. However, it more often comes in one piece weighing between 1 ½ and 2 pounds and will take a bit of trimming from the home cook to remove the inedible sinew that runs through the center.
- 1 ½ to 2 pound hanger steak (at room temperature)
- canola oil (as needed)
- freshly cracked black pepper (as needed)
- flaky sea salt (as needed)
- horseradish cream (as needed for serving, see recipe)
- sweet onion marmalde (as needed for serving, see recipe)
- watercress (for garnish, optional)
If you’re working with a whole hanger steak it will require some preparation before cooking. Start by trimming any obvious sinew from the outside of the hanger steak. Then examine the steak on both sides and locate the thick sinew that runs lengthwise through the meat. Cut the steak in half running your knife along this sinew. Set the first piece aside then cut the sinew from the other half out and discard it. You will notice that you are left with two pieces of meat of different sizes that will cook at different rates.
Salt and pepper both sides of the meat generously just before cooking.
For this recipe, I’m leaving the pieces as they are and portioning at the table, but you may cut the steaks into three or four similarly sized individual servings if you prefer. You may also choose to butterfly the meat. This will ensure a uniform thickness and a relatively shorter cook time than I’ve indicated below. I like hangar steak thick and rare, use your own best judgment.
Once the meat is prepared heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat and drizzle in a scant film of oil, swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet. Once the pan gets very hot (almost smoking) lay the meat gently into the skillet. Let the meat cook undisturbed until it forms a good crust, about 4 to 6 minutes (less if the meat has been butterflied). Flip the meat and cook about 30 seconds to 1 minute more for rare. Move the meat to a cutting board to rest for 10 to 12 minutes.
Slice the steak into chunky pieces. Serve with a generous spoonful of horseradish cream and a big dollop of onion marmalade. Drizzle any of the juices left on the cutting board across the meat. Garnish with watercress (if using).