Thursday, October 2, 2014

Asian-Marinated Grilled Flank Steak

Flank steak, also known as London broil, isn't the most tender cut of beef, but it is one of the most flavourful. Cut from hardworking abdominal muscles with a pronounced grain of long muscle fibres, the key to achieving a tender flank steak is to let the meat marinate for a long time. One of my favourite recipes is this Asian-inspired mixture of soy sauce, rice wind vinegar, honey, garlic, ginger, sriracha, Worcestershire sauce and fresh lime zest. Poured into a large resealable plastic bag along with the steak, it should be refrigerated for at least 6 hours or even overnight, to help tenderize the meat. Cooked on high heat for medium-rare and sliced thinly across the grain, this flank steak will be as tender, flavourful and delicious as even the most expensive tenderloin.

Asian-Marinated Grilled Flank Steak
Serves 4

1 2-pound flank steak
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 tbsp honey
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 lime, zest only
1 tsp sriracha or other chili sauce
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3 scallions, thinly sliced

Whisk together the soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and oil in a large bowl, then blend in the honey, minced garlic, ginger, lime zest, sriracha, Worcestershire sauce and chopped scallions, stirring well to combine. Poke the flank steak all over with a fork and place in a large resealable plastic bag along with the marinade, turning it over to coat well. Seal the plastic bag and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or preferably overnight, turning occasionally. 

About half an hour before the grill is ready for cooking, remove steak from fridge to bring it to room temperature. Preheat the barbecue to medium-high and remove the steak, and season generously with kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. Transfer the marinade to a small pot and bring just to a boil, then set aside for use basting the steak while on the barbecue. 

Grill the steak lid closed, basting occasionally, for 3-4 minutes per side for rare, or 6 or 7 minutes per side for well done, making sure that once the steak is on the grill it's not moved until needed, to produce a sweet caramelized crust. For nice grill marks, move the steak once half way in between the cooking time for each side. Don't cook too long or else flank steak becomes tough.

Remove the steak to a carving board and let rest for 5-10 minutes, during which time the meat will reabsorb all its juices and produce a wonderfully juicy and delicious flank steak. Using a sharp knife, slice the steak against the grain, into 1/4 to 1/2-inch thick slices — the thinner the better— and serve garnished with chopped scallions or chives and sesame seeds, and any accumulated juices.