Hey everyone, it’s Whatever Wednesdays again. Today is just going to be a short post about “Ribeye Cap“.
So, while I’m technically an omnivore, I’m primarily a carnivore. Meaning, if given the choice I’d rather eat a steak than a salad.
I’ve written a little about ribeye cap before, however, I recently went out to do some shopping at Costco on my day off (yesterday). It’s not nearly as crowded on a weekday in the morning as a normal weekend so I took the time to browse the aisles a little. I took a look at the meat and lo and behold, they had my favorite cut of meat the ribeye cap.
I asked the guy working there and he said that my Costco actually carries the ribeye cap everyday. However, sometimes it might be gone by mid or late afternoon, or if you aren’t looking for it, you might not find it. When I went in the morning at around 9:30 am or so (they open at 9am), there was probably about 12 packages of 4. Apparently, they had a deal on them for the Super Bowl this past Sunday too, although I didn’t know about it.
Update: My friend over in Hawaii Kai says the Hawaii Kai Costco carries it too, although I’m not sure how often. Maybe all the Costcos here on Oahu carry it sometimes. However, the one over on Iwilei in town appears to have it everyday as a staple item.
What’s the deal with Ribeye Cap?
Well, I’ve mentioned it before, but I’m not like really good about meat cuts or anything. In general I just stick to Filet Mignon or Ribeyes. A good New York Strip once in awhile isn’t bad either.
However, about a year ago or so I went to a bbq that my daughter’s friend’s parents had. He had gotten a bunch of steaks for us to try they he cooked up on his grill and I remember the flavor being distinctively different from anything else I’d had. I asked him where he got it from and he said Costco. After that he explained the cut was ribeye cap, which was his favorite cut and he told me all about it. At that moment, I was sold, my steak of choice from then on would be ribeye cap.
Unfortunately, ribeye cap is not something that is sold in restaurants, nor is it a common cut in your local supermarket. Your local specialty butcher might do it for you if you ask them, but even that is not very common.
Additionally, it’s pretty expensive at around $19.99/lb, so this isn’t a steak you should be buying all the time. I think it’s good for a treat once in awhile.
Well, in general, it doesn’t really make sense to only cut off the cap of the ribeye. If you cut off the cap, you’re just left with the eye of the ribeye. Then you have to sell the ribeye cap and eye of ribeye separately. The general population probably won’t buy them separately, and would prefer to just buy the whole ribeye together.
The other reason is that the ribeye cap isn’t a nice solid chunk of meat. It’s a “cap” meaning it’s long and slender. So what people who sell it usually do is coil it upon itself and tie it with twine. In the above picture, each ribeye cap steak pinwheel is individually wrapped in twine.
Why is the ribeye cap better than the eye of the ribeye?
Well, this is a subjective assessment.
However, in general, the ribeye cap is more fatty than the eye of the ribeye. This is because the ribeye cap is actually the spinalis dorsi muscle whereas the eye of the ribeye is the longissimus dorsi muscle.
As you would expect major muscles are worked more and become larger. However, accessory muscles, or muscles that aren’t used as often, will be more fatty. In general, the spinalis dorsi (ribeye cap) isn’t used that often so it usually a fattier piece of meat.
Interesting, how do I get it?
Like I said, I’ve only ever seen it at my Costco. I’ve had my friends check the other Costcos on Oahu and they haven’t seen it there. It is possible that they are missing it from the time of the day they go as well. In general, it’s a pretty rare cut, but check out your local Costco, they may have it.
Also, if you’re really interested, you can just buy a whole ribeye, cut off the cap and roll it into a pinwheel and tie it up yourself. Then you can just cut the eye of the ribeye into two small medallions. After that cook them all up and do a side by side taste test of the ribeye cap and eye of the ribeye.
How do you prepare it?
This is all personal preference of course.
In general, I’m not a huge fan of doing too much to my steaks. If the cut of meat is good, all you need to do is throw some good sea salt on there. I prefer to just use the grill since my in-laws brought a nice grill with them when they moved in with u. My father-in-law is really good at grilling stuff up. He’s kind of known around the neighborhood for always being outside grilling things for us.
However, if you don’t want to grill it, another option is to use sous-vide then sear with a pan. The third option, pan frying, is a little more difficult to get quite right. That said, there are a lot of tutorials online to do it. Here’s a good one from Rafael on craftlog.com
I prefer to cook the ribeye caps with the twine on, since we grill. If you remove the twine, the ribeye cap will unwind and be difficult to cook evenly. Just grill it up with the twine on and then throw it on the plate and let it mellow for 3-5 minutes or so. Then cut the twine off and serve. If you want you can throw some butter on it or use some chimichurri, but in my opinion, it really doesn’t need anything.
However, from my understanding, some people prefer to cut off the twine and Sous-vide or pan fry them as strips.
If you haven’t had it before, give it a shot. You can thank me later.
I love ribeye cap.
If you see it, give it a shot.
Or, if you’re adventurous, buy a whole ribeye and make your own ribeye cap and directly compare it to the eye of the ribeye.
Just remember to keep the twine on when you cook it.
Agree? Disagree? Questions, Comments and Suggestions are welcome.
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