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Pittsburgh Rare Steak - Black & Blue

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Pittsburgh Rare Steak

Getty Images/Owen Price Collection
According to local Pittsburgh lore, Pittsburgh steelworkers would often bring hunks of meat for lunch, rather than sandwiches. When lunchtime came, they would slap the piece of steak against a slab of hot metal in the mill to sear a blackened exterior around a red, rare core - a cooking style now known as "Pittsburgh Rare." Even the area bars got into the act, serving up Pittsburgh Rare steak, followed by a "boiler maker," or shot of whiskey and a bottle of beer.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes


  • Porterhouse, Strip, or other excellent cut of steak (approximately 1 1/2" thick)
  • Salt & Pepper


Trim excess fat from the steak and season with salt and pepper. Marinate for four hours, if desired. Grill on high heat, or cook in a really, really hot cast iron pan, turning occasionally, until inside temperature reaches approximately 110 degrees, and the outside is well browned and slightly charred around the edges. The trick here is the very high heat! Pittsburgh steak is often called "black and blue." It should be practically charred on the outside (black), while the center remains cold and rare (blue).

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