I actually came across the idea of cooking a steak over a charcoal chimney in a recent issue of Cook’s Illustrated magazine. There are variations of the idea on the web, but most of them use a small charcoal grate over a lit chimney of charcoal. This approach uses skewers, which I found to be a little less precarious and actually kind of fun.
I lit up a large Weber charcoal chimney full about 3/4ths of the way with charcoal. I seasoned a boneless strip steak with salt and pepper while I was waiting for the charcoal to get going. You could easily do several steaks while the charcoal is still lit, or do what I did and just use the charcoal in your smoker. It’s a great way to make use of all that great heat while the chimney is getting going.
I skewered the steak and over the fire it went. It cooked fast, as you would expect. I had a few flare ups, but I dealt with those by temporarily lifting the steak (using a set of long barbecue gloves) away from the flames.
I flipped the steak after a few minutes and cooked it until the internal temperature hit about 120 F, and actually a little higher. Then I removed the steak from the skewers and let it rest 10 minutes before slicing. It came out great. Perfect flavor with a bit of char.
If you want a little kick to your steak, try marinating it first. For more of a kick try my Cajun steak marinade. My favorite side dish for a great steak? My copycat of Outback Steakhouse’s green beans.
Chimney-Fired Strip Steak
- Fill a charcoal chimney 3/4ths of the way with charcoal and light.
- While you’re waiting for the charcoal to start, remove the steak from the fridge and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.
- Once the charcoal is fully lit, skewer a steak and place on top of the chimney.
- Sear the steak for 3-4 minutes per side, watching for any flare-ups.
- Flip the steak and continue cooking until the desired doneness is reached.
- Let steak rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Nutritional values are approximate.