The tri-tip is a popular boomerang-shaped cut of beef. It comes from the bottom sirloin subprimal cut, it's a tine triangular muscle. It tastes delicious when smoked or prepared using the reverse seared method.
It is pretty hard to buy, depending on the region, city or country. It comes under many different names. For example, California cut, sirloin tip, sirloin butt, Newport steak, culotte, bottom sirloin, top sirloin and more.
This type of steak is popular in California, it has become a specialty in Santa Maria.
How to cut Tri-tip ?
It's a little harder to cut due to the fact that it consists of two different grain directions. Cutting it improperly may result in the steak being hard and stringy.
If we look at the picture, we can see that half of the steak has vertical fibers, while the other half has diagonal fibers. Just take a look at the picture below, raw meat makes it more clear. When putting that piece in front of yourself, you can noticea boomerang-like shape, one of the sides is definitely shorter.
Before we move on to the cutting process, you need to have the right tools at hand.
Plenty of people also wonder whether they should cut it before or after cooking?
The best solution is to do it before cooking. Prepare your tri tip the way you like it, add salt, pepper and garlic. Remember that after cooking you should leave it to rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Don't cut it right away, wait for the juices inside the meat to stop flowing.
If you start cutting it right away, you're risking the meat being dry after all the juices flow out.
Prepare some board, a wooden one will do. It is necessary that is has groves on the sides. The moment you start cutting the meat, juices start flowing out of it. That's why it's important that the board is appropriate if you want to keep your workplace clean.
When it comes to accessories you'll need to cut tri-trip. It's basic tools such as knife, fork, board and some bowl for meat or a plate.
How to slice tri-tip correctly
After cooking, put the meat away for 10 to 15 minutes before cutting. It will allow the juices to stay inside the meat.
Find a place where two grains cross. Then cut throught that spot vertically, which will make two pieces. One of them will be longer than the other.
At this point you have to find out how the grains run on both pieces. Once you find them, cut perpendicularly to the grains.
It is recommended to cut it into thinner slices, which makes the meat more delicate.
As you can see, it wasn't hard at all. If you've never done this before, you might be confused, but after the first time it will be something very easy for you.
Want to learn more about tri-tip ? Check out 12 things you should know about tri tip.