The porterhouse steak is cut from the short loin. If you're looking at a cow diagram, it'll be right in the middle. Porterhouse & T-bone are often used interchangeably, but they're not quite the same thing. They're both cut from the short loin, and they both contain the strip steak, which is shown here on the left, as well as the tenderloin on the right. But the porterhouse is cut from the rear end of the short loin and has a larger tenderloin. To be labeled a "Porterhouse" it must have a tenderloin at least 1.25" wide. Other than that, they are the same cut and can be treated the same way.
This is a tender cut with great flavor, and it doesn't require much in the way of seasonings or preparation. If you're someone who likes your steak medium to medium-well, a porterhouse is a good choice because it stays tender and tasty even at higher temps.
Recipe. You can't do a search for Porterhouse Steak without seeing Bobby Flay's recipe pop up, so I gave it a whirl. It is below.
- Salt the hell out of the room temperature steak on both sides. Pepper, too.
- Set your oven to "broil" and let it get hot.
- Heat some butter or oil in your cast iron over high heat.
- Add the steak and sear it undisturbed for four minutes until a dark crust forms.
- Transfer the steak to a cutting board, brown side up, and remove the two pieces of meat from either side of the bone. Then cut each piece perpendicularly against the grain in to 1in. pieces. Arrange cut pieces back into the shape of the steak around the bone.
- Return to skillet, brown side up, top with a couple chunks of butter, and stick it in the hot oven for 2-4 minutes, or until it reaches the desired temperature.
The result. Bobby's recipe calls for a 2in. thick steak, but ours are closer to 1.25in. Because of this, I took it out of the oven after about a minute and a half and it was right at medium. This cooking method is more appropriate for a thicker steak, however it is a nice way to ensure even doneness, plus it looks pretty cool. I am a medium-rare guy, but it was still tender and delicious. I fried up a couple of eggs in the hot steak pan and enjoyed a hearty breakfast.
If you follow this method but omit step 5 and place it in the oven uncut, it will be much easier for you to yield a nice medium-rare.
A porterhouse is tender, delicious and versatile steak that doesn't need much beyond some s&p.