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Serves 4.
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Bistecca alla Fiorentina

Contributed by: News Canada

This famed Florentine steak got its name if not its origin in the eighteenth century when cooks in Florence tried to appease British visitors who were insisting on eating their beloved English beefsteak. Today in Tuscany, a true Bistecca alla Fiorentina comes from an ancient breed of cattle called Chianina and is cut like a large, thick T-bone or Porterhouse steak. The meat is simply seasoned with a light coat of rich olive oil, salt and pepper before being grilled over a hot wood fire.

Certified Angus beef, properly cut, makes the best substitute for Bistecca alla Fiorentina. In Tuscany, the steak is most often served unadorned, except in the area around Arezzo where it frequently comes with a wonderful anchovy and caper sauce.


  • 2 high quality T-bone or Porterhouse steaks, cut 2 1/2 inches thick
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, preferably from Tuscany
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Anchovy-Caper Sauce
  • anchovy fillets, drained and finely minced
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained and coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, preferably from Tuscany
  • Sea salt, if desired


Place the steaks on a platter and brush them lightly on both sides with the olive oil; season with the salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Meanwhile, make the Anchovy-Caper Sauce: Combine the anchovies, garlic and caper in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil and season further with salt if desired.

Place the steaks in the center of the cooking grate. Grill about 10 minutes per side for rare meat (the Tuscan preference) or longer to desired doneness.

Let the steak rest for 5 minutes and then carve it away from the bone into individual portions. Sprinkle with a little salt just before serving and pass the Anchovy-Caper Sauce for spooning over the meat.

Charcoal: Direct - Gas: Direct/Medium Heat

Serving Size: Serves 4.



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