Steak Society checks out Lidl’s huge Cowboy steak
Listen up Cowboy
Last week I gave a heads up on our Facebook page about Lidl’s discounted Cowboy Steak. It’s selling for £15 per kg, which is ridiculously cheap. At this price Lidl probably aren’t making money out of this but they’re betting that you’ll stop by for the steak and pick up a few other things along the way.
We couldn’t resist the chance to check out a large chunk of meat from a discount supermarket like Lidl. Now this steak has been flying off the shelves. I had to do my own mini cowboy tour of south London just to find a Lidl that had still had one in stock.
I eventually got lucky and found the last remaining one at Lidl’s Catford store.
Lidl’s Cowboy Steak
Now a Cowboy steak just sounds cool. It’s actually just a bone-in rib eye steak. This is a cut from the rib section of the cow and is actually one of my favourite cuts of steaks; it’s super tasty, juicy and pretty tender as well.
The steak is branded as a Deluxe Cowboy steak. It’s packaged in a smart-looking black box and the steak is sealed in a vacuumed packed bag.
The steak has been dry aged for 14 days, which isn’t a long time, most butchers would dry age their beef for at least 21 days and many are doing 45 days plus. The box then says the meat is matured for another 7 days, this means it is probably aged in the vacuum packed bag. The steak was a light red indicating that the cow was reasonably young when slaughtered (probably about 2 – 2 1/2 years old as is standard in the UK).
The packaging offers no details on the breed of cow, other than to indicate that the beef is slaughtered and probably raised in Northern Ireland by W D Meats. It’s possible that this is Hereford beef, a native English breed but there isn’t any clear way to tell.
The cooking guidelines on the packaging suggest that you fry the steak in the pan for a couple of minutes each side and then roast it for 25 minutes to ensure its cooked through. You should burn the box. These instructions are just bad, bad, bad. The only way to kill a cow twice is to overcook it. So let’s not do that.
We’re going do things our own way:
- Rest the steak. It should be at room temperature when you cook it.
- Season the steak. We want to form a nice salty crust for the steak
- Cook the steak. This is a really thick steak so we’re going to fry the steak on a pan at the highest temperature possible. We’re not going to use any oils but instead rely on the steak’s own fat. We’re going to cook it for 4 minutes each side for a medium-rare steak.
- Cook it some more. As we’re dealing with a pretty thick steak oven cook the steak for a further 10 minutes at about 180 degrees.
- Rest the steak. We’re going to leave the steak to rest for a few minutes. This is because the steak is still cooking inside. It also allows the juices inside the steak to settle.
- Eat. Carve, eat and savour the sweet, sweet steak.
Eating the steak:
After resting the steak I eagerly carved and served it. I ate a piece and immediately noticed two things: it was unusually tasty and very juicy.
It was unusually tasty in the sense that it tasted unusual. It wasn’t a beefy or savoury taste but a taste I can only really describe as sweet. The steak was tender and soft to bite but had a texture that made it a mission to get through. The steak did grow on me as I ate more of it.
Hang fire for the verdict:
Is this a great steak? No. But it’s not a terrible one either. It’s a solid but unspectacular 3/5.
I wouldn’t recommend buying a Lidl steak over buying from a decent butcher, but if you are in the market for a large and cheap steak then the discount supermarkets may be your answer.
If you’ve enjoyed this feature sign up for our newsletter, we’ll keep you up to date on all our Steak adventures and even some exclusive offers. You can also check out Steak Boner’s T-Bone tour of London.