Flank steak is a renowned cut of beef in other countries, (Bavette steak in France, Sobrebarriga in Columbia) but relatively unknown over here. You do need to prepare it the right way, but the rewards are worth it as the flavour is fantastic.
Over the weekend I cooked a dirty steak on the Big Green Egg using flank – this is where you cook the beef directly on the coals. As with tougher cuts of meat, you either need to cook it long and slow, or very quick on high heat, and the coals are ideal for this. Surprisingly it still takes a while to cook, without burning and without any ash sticking to the steak.
First we marinaded the steak overnight in lime juice, chilli, cumin, oregano, honey and garlic, and then brought it up to room temperature. Wait for the coals to become white hot before placing the steak directly onto the coals, and stay calm, leave it for a couple of minutes (depending on thickness) and then turn. You want to eat it rare, or medium rare and it will need to rest for the same amount of time that you cooked it for. Then slice thinly across the grain of the meat.
We served ours in tortillas with guacamole and roasted veg (off the big green egg), sour cream and coriander, with a squeeze of lime. The margarita cocktails finished the job.
However, it’s also great for a steak sandwich, while the Colombian recipe calls for the beef to be braised in beer with onion, cumin, cayenne and green pepper for an hour or more until tender and then finished on very hot coals just to get crisped on the outside.
It’s definitely worth giving it a try and we have plenty of flank steak in the butcher’s this weekend.