Don't Try This Scary Reddit Method For Searing Prime Rib

"Does the steak have a good sear?"

"I like to have a good crust on my steak, so I sear it on high heat."

You've probably seen some variation of these phrases before, be it from grilling magazines or on television cooking shows. You hear the word "sear" used so commonly with steak you probably think it's just a fancy buzzword chefs use to make their steak sound more gourmet. In reality, the act of searing a steak is, according to The Spruce Eats' definition, "to cook something hot and fast to brown the surface and seal in the juices." Put simply, it's getting that golden-brown crust on the surface of your steak or roast. And there are actually a lot of ways you can go about searing your meat, each with its own benefits.

If you want to make a steak that's medium-rare, but still have a good exterior crust, you can follow J. Kenji Lopez-Alt's method for reverse searing your steak, where you sear the meat after you finish cooking it. If you want to stick to the traditional way, you can follow Fifteen Spatula's guidelines on how to sear your steak or prime rib. For this method, you pat the steak dry so that no moisture will interrupt its searing, and then you put it into a sizzling-hot pan to get as much crust on it as possible. You may make some mistakes when searing meat if it's your first time, but as long as you're pleased with the results, there's no real "wrong way" to sear.

Well, there's one method that you probably shouldn't undertake — that is, unless you're either incredibly skilled or have no qualms about causing a fire. 

One chef used chimney starter to get a good sear

The old saying goes that if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. One Reddit user by the name of MustardIsDecent wasn't afraid to see how much heat he and his meat could handle. The chef posted a video of himself grilling his prime rib to the subreddit r/Grilling using not propane or even charcoal but instead a chimney starter. Now, you don't need to be a grilling expert to know that you probably shouldn't be grilling directly on top of a chimney starter, but some commenters seemed to have some decent advice for the unconventional grillmaster. 

"If I may offer advice, don't pre-heat the grate, put it on at the last second," said user Razorwire. "When the grate is really hot you get extreme charing that can get acrid/bitter. With cold grates, you can achieve a near-uniform deep mahogany crust."

"Wouldn't be so dangerous with a flatter grate, that teeter totter would scare me too lol..." joked user Egbert71. "This is one of my favorite ways when it's just me eating. The saving of my lump charcoal is a bonus." MustardIsDecent responded, claiming that "the adrenaline rush is my amuse-bouche."

Strangely, while this method is a bit dangerous, America's Test Kitchen also promotes using a similar method to get that "ultimate char" on your steaks. Even Alton Brown has used a chimney starter as an impromptu grill for his steaks. Nevertheless, cooking the perfect steak can be done in different ways, and who is anyone to knock someone's preferred method?