Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Grilling simplicity

I am a victim of a steak accident: the five large grass fed New York steaks that I left at my dear friend K's freezer in order for him to bring the still frozen steaks to our ski cabin in Tahoe, he forgot. Instead, he brought them to the last Saturday's picnic in Sonoma. Carefully defrosted. Together with a couple of gallons of lamb and beef kabobs, marinated with red wine and onions. For the seven of us.

Of course, after struggling to get down all the kabobs (delicious, just way too much!) no one cold even think about the steaks. So they gave them all to me, to take home. I told them I already have a large chunk of beef tenderloin at home. They wouldn't listen. So R. and I are stuck with steaks for the rest of the week.
Luckily, I have a wonderful cookbook to read for inspiration, Seven Fires: Grilling the Argentine Way . It's all about steaks and wood fire, including a recipe for a whole cow, roasted over wood coals on a metal frame. If he can do a cow, I can do 5 strips and a tenderloin. And I have the Farmers Market for the vegetable support.
Grilled baby artichokes and Russian Banana fingerling potatoes:

Remove the outer leaves from baby artichokes, trim the stalks. Cut the artichokes in half, place in a pot with cold water, a pinch of salt, and a lemon, cut in half. Bring to boil and cook until they can be pierced easily with a knife, about 10 minutes. Drain and let cool.

Cover the fingerling potatoes with boiling water, parboil until tender, 15-20 minutes. Drain, let cool a little, cut in half lengthwise.

Preheat the grill to hot.

Season 1/2 cup mild olive oil with salt and pepper. Toss the vegetables with the oil. (Brush the remaining oil on the steaks.) Grill the vegetables until slightly charred, turning once.

Grill the steaks on one side without moving them, until they come easily off the grill, about 3 -4 minutes. Lift and rotate 60 degrees. Grill for 2 minutes. Turn and grill to desired donness. Press the steak (carefully, hot!) with a finger. When it's as soft as the first joint of your index finger it is rare, the medium joint is medium, and the top joint is well done. Or use a termometer.

I don't specify the quantities here. Everyone's steak accidents are different.

A simple salad of mixed greens and heirloom tomatoes is dressed with juice and minced rind of one small blood orange + 2 Tbsp EVOO + salt&pepper.


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