Yield: 4 to 6 servings
IT IS POSSIBLE to have beef that's tender but also affordable; just start with a less expensive cut and add a marinade. I like the flavor and texture of flank steak prepared London broil style; but other options are top round, top sirloin, and shoulder roasts.
Combine a few basic ingredients -- oil, herbs, and an acidic ingredient (vinegar, citrus fruit juices, or wine) -- in a heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag. To save time, you can simply use Italian salad dressing, or mix together 1 cup vegetable oil, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, and 1 minced clove garlic. Marinate beef at least 30 minutes, then sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook over hot coals. Remember -- for tender steak, do not cook beyond medium rare. Overcooking toughens the meat.
- Judy Feagin
What Is London Broil?
London broil is defined as a flank steak from the lower hindquarters of the cow, which is marinated and then broiled or grilled. Some claim it was first served in London in 1931; others say its origins are American and the name is a matter of creative license. The term is also used somewhat loosely to describe thick cuts of meat such as top round and sirloin.
Score steak by making 1/8-inch-deep diagonal slashes across the meat in two different directions to create a diamond pattern on both sides of the meat. Add steak to marinade; seal and chill at least 1 hour or overnight. (If you wish to reserve some of the marinade to use as a basting sauce, do so before adding the steak; see box, "Tips for Marinating.")
Remove steak from marinade, reserving 1/4 cup marinade. Boil reserved marinade 5 minutes to kill any bacteria; use as a basting sauce. Grill steak, covered with grill lid, over high heat (400° to 500°) 5 minutes on each side or to desired degree of doneness, basting occasionally. Remove from grill; let steak stand covered for 5 minutes. (To broil, place steak on a rack in a broiler pan. Broil 3 to 5 inches from heat for 5 minutes on each side or to desired degree of doneness.)
Slice steak diagonally across grain into thin strips.
In this issue: Summer Off the Beaten Path
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