This cut goes by many different names - in the US it's called rump cap or top sirloin cap. In Israel, it's called shpitz chuh. In Brazil and other Latin American countries, it's called Picanha (pronounced "pee-KAHN-ya") and is considered the most popular cut of beef.
Although Picanha isn't considered a premium cut like NY strip steak, rib-eye or tenderloin, the demand for it grows every day as it is bursting with flavor and tender.
The first dish I ever cooked sous vide was Picanha steaks and it was a hell of a start!
Top sirloin cap, also known as Picanha
Ground black pepper
Onion powder (optional)
Fresh thyme (optional)
Seasoning and scoring
Picanha cut is known for its flavors, so seasoning should remain as simple as possible.
Score the fat layer in a diamond-shaped pattern.
The seasoning will now penetrate the fat layer allowing the fat to cook thoroughly. In addition, it can mark the direction of the grain to help when slicing against the grain after searing.
Season the cut on all sides with salt and pepper.
Put the meat into the vacuum bag and seal it.
Submerge the vacuum bag into the preheated water at 56°C/ 133°F and cook for 8 hours.
After 8 hours remove the meat from the bag and pat it dry with a paper towel.
Preheat your skillet over high heat and start searing the meat first on the fat layer until achieving a caramelized and crispy crust.
No need to add oil into the skillet - the fat layer will render out and produce enough additional oil during the searing process.
Turn it over and sear only for 30 seconds to get a thin caramelized layer.
Upgrading the dish with Chimichurri
Chimichurri is a perfect accompaniment to any barbecued or grilled meat with Latin flavors.
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 cup finely chopped parsley
2 cloves garlic
1 red chili
1 tbsp dried oregano (fresh preferred)
Salt to taste
Black ground pepper to taste
Zest of a lemon
4 tbsp lemon juice
1 finely chopped onion
1/2 bell pepper
In a blender, mix all the ingredients together using the pulse setting to get the desired texture.
Serve with meat, fish and as a salad dressing.