The Well-Done Steak Problem

Most chefs learn pretty quickly that the customer’s idea of what tastes best is different their idea of what makes a good meal. More than any other food item, chefs are astonished by the amount of restaurant patrons that request that their steak be cooked well-done (i.e. steak cooked at over 160 degrees Fahrenheit with no pink on the inside, containing effectively no juiciness).

Given the flavorings and taste that is lost while cooking a well-done steak, many chefs will think back upon their culinary school experience and try to channel the inner wisdom of the Irish political philosopher Edmund Burke, who once said: “Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgment; and he betrays instead of serving you if he sacrifices it to your opinion.”

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