Monday, April 22, 2013

Kicked Up Carne Asada Steak

Carne Asada Steak with Guacamole Salad
Winter should be gone by now, but here in Denver we are getting another round of snow for today and tomorrow!  At least over the weekend we had decent weather for grilling.  I made this marinated flank steak on Sunday when it was a “balmy” 54 degrees outside….LOL.  Still, it was a nice break from the cold and snow we have experienced this April.   
This marinated flank steak has become a staple in our house since I came across it several years ago while watching the Food Network.  The original recipe was entitled Tacos Carne Asada, but I loved the flavor of the meat so much that I didn’t want to cover up the meat with anything besides some guacamole and a side salad.  The marinade for this steak is called Mojo and it certainly gets the Mojo working on the meat by tenderizing it and imparting to the meat the most delicious citrus, garlic and jalapeno flavors.
2 pounds flank steak or skirt steak
1 recipe Mojo – recipe below
Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
1 recipe Guacamole salsa – below
Shredded romaine lettuce for side salad

Mojo Marinade:
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, minced ( I leave the seeds and veins in for some added kick!)
1 large handful fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 limes, juiced
1 orange, juiced
2 tablespoons white vinegar
½ cup olive oil

Using a mortar and pestle (or a bowl and the back of a wooden spoon), mash together the garlic, jalapeno, cilantro, salt and pepper to make a paste.  Put the paste into a glass jar or plastic container and add the lime juice, orange juice, vinegar and olive oil. 

Shake it up vigorously to combine.  Lay the flank steak in a large baking dish and pour the marinade over it, making sure to cover the meat fully.  Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or up to 8 hours.  The longer the meat is marinated, the more the flavors can sink into the meat.  Do not marinate the steak for more than 8 hours or the meat will get mushy. 

Preheat an outdoor grill or a ridged grill pan over medium high heat.  Pull the steak out of the mojo and season the steak on both sides with salt and pepper.  Grill or broil the steak for 7 to 10 minutes on each side, turning only once, until medium rare.  Place the steak on a cutting board and let it rest for 5 minutes to allow the juices to re-distribute within the meat.  Thinly slice the steak across the grain on a diagonal and serve with romaine lettuce and guacamole salsa on the side.  It’s also delicious with a side of black beans or you can put the meat into tacos as the original recipe suggests.  Cheers!

Guacamole Salsa:
3 ripe avocados, chopped
Juice of 1 lime
1/4 tsp Garlic powder
1 handful Cilantro, finely chopped
1/4 cup red onion, chopped
1 Fresh jalapeƱo, finely chopped
5-6 Cherry tomatoes, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut the avocados in half and scoop out the insides, discarding the seeds.   Mash the avocado in a bowl and add the remaining ingredients, stirring thoroughly to combine.  For best flavor,  allow the guacamole to sit in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to an hour for the flavors to combine together.