Saturday, July 21, 2018

Homemade Cheese Curds – Plan B

Making your own cheese curds at home requires several special ingredients, takes many, many hours, and there are a lot of steps. Other than that, it’s a pretty quick and easy thing to do. So, if you’re planning on making poutine, and there’s a store nearby that sells fresh curds, you should really consider that Plan A. This recipe is Plan B.

Having said that, this is still a fun, satisfying project, and even someone as inexperienced as I am can produce a decent product. Keep in mind; we’re eventually going to pour hot beef gravy all over these, so that should help everyone stay relaxed. Some of the ingredients below sound exotic and kind of scary, but they’re all easy to find in health food stores, or online, and used properly, are completely safe.

With that in mind, I encourage you to do some research on things like sterilizing equipment, and other best practices. While their times, temps, and procedures are slightly different, I referred to these fine videos by ChefSteps and Gavin Webber. In regards to complexity of technique, my method falls somewhere between those two, but they’re both well worth checking out for more info.

Besides the time involved, the hardest thing is keeping everything at those relatively low temps. A sous vide set-up would be prefect for this, but a double-boiler does work. Just keep a thermometer in place, and once the milk gets up to 90 F., alternate between low heat and no heat to get where you need to be.

Is it worth all the effort? I’m not sure, but fried cheese curds are a very nice treat, and having a cube of fresh cheese to pop into your mouth anytime you get the urge is pretty sweet, and then of course we have Poutine. Which is the only reason most people know that cheese curds are even a thing. So, if Plan A isn’t an option, I really do hope you give these a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for about 1 Pound Cheese Curds:
1 gallon whole milk
1/2 teaspoon calcium chloride crystals, diluted in 1/4 cup of water
1/8 teaspoon mesophilic culture
1/4 teaspoon liquid rennet, diluted in 1/4 cup of water (Check directions on package, as the strengths can vary. Mine was “double-strength”)
*kosher salt to season finished curds

* You want to apply exactly 1% kosher salt based on the weight of the finished curds. For example, if you end up with 400 grams of cheese curds, then season with 4 grams of salt.
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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Chocolate-Dipped Coconut Macaroons – What a Difference an “O” Makes

I’ve always found it amusing that macaroons, which are one of the easiest cookies ever, has the same name, give or take an “o,” as the famously difficult macaron

Even though they have the same origin, which the Italian word maccarone (also where we get macaroni), they couldn’t be more different in texture, as well as the skill they require.

Since we did (and totally nailed) the hard one, I figured I should do the easy one, especially since I just got back from vacation, and something simple seemed like a really good idea. Speaking of easy, using sweetened condensed milk streamlines the operation, and produces a very nice texture, but if you can’t find it, there are many macaroon recipes that use white, or powdered sugar, so don’t let that slow you down.

Regarding the chocolate dip, you can just melt, and use any kind you like, but for that extra professional touch, I suggest tempering the chocolate before you dip.  There are many complicated demos online, which involve heating and cooling the chocolates using very specific temperatures, and they work great, but I generally don’t have the patience. 

Instead, I use a shortcut method that involves chopping up some dark chocolate into the size of peas, melting 75% of it, and then stirring in the other 25%, until it melts. That should get you pretty close, and at the very least you’ll have a firmer, snappier texture than if you just melted all the chocolate at once, and started dipping. Either way, I hope you give these easy coconut macaroons a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for about 24 Chocolate-Dipped Coconut Macaroons:
3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1 large egg white
3 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
- Bake at 350 F. for 20 minutes, or until golden.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Chef John is on Vacation

I wanted to let everyone know that I’ll be on vacation for the next week or so, and really looking forward to doing absolutely nothing. I'm sure I'll do some cooking, since it's always fun to experiment with new recipes without the pressure of having to film and edit them at the same time. Who knows, some of them may even end up making it onto the channel. 

I may also brush up on my golf game, which is currently not good. As you can see from the video below, I really need to learn how to hit the ball the right way, and not backwards between my legs. Anyway, I'm looking forward to a nice, relaxing break, and suggest you use this time to catch up on any and all videos you may have missed. We have a ton. Thank you, and stay tuned!

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Steamed Barbecue Pork Buns (Char Siu Bao) – Sweet, Steamy Memories

In younger, leaner times, I’d often rely on the delicious, inexpensive calorie bomb that is the steamed barbecue pork bun. They were twice the size, and for a few bucks you could get very full…for about 30 minutes, and then you were starving again. Nothing a Mission-style burrito couldn’t fix.

Anyway, the filling was chopped Chinese-style barbecue pork mixed with some kind of mysterious, gelatinous red sauce, which was significantly sweeter than what I’m doing here. 

That’s probably why they don’t seem to come out quite the same as I remember. I probably need a lot more sugar, as well as copious amounts of MSG. Having said that, I was pretty pleased with my insides, but as usual I encourage you to freestyle. 

Here’s a link to a fairly classic pork bun filling recipe, in case you want something slightly more authentic, and since it looks just like the stuff I mentioned above, I might give it a try next time. But, regardless what you fill yours with, I really do hope you give these a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 12 Steamed Barbecue Pork Buns (Char Siu Bao):
For the dough:
3/4 cups warm water
1 1/2 teaspoons dry active yeast
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoon white sugar
2 cups *self-rising flour
For the filling (this made more than I needed):
2 cups chopped Chinese-style barbecue pork, or other barbecued pork product
1/4 cup finely sliced green onions
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1/4 cup hoisin sauce, or as needed
salt (soy sauce) and cayenne to taste
2 teaspoons white sugar, optional

*If you don't have self-rising flour, you can use 2 cups all-purpose flour sifted with 3 teaspoons baking powder and 1 teaspoon fine table salt.

Friday, June 29, 2018

Lemon Jalapeño Marinated Mussels – Definitely My First or Second Favorite Way to Eat Mussels

I might give you a different answer in the middle of February, when there’s nothing better than a hot bowl of mussels, swimming in some kind of garlicky, winey broth, but this time of year, chilled and marinated are my favorite way to go.

You can dress these anyway you want, but no matter how you flavor them, you’ll want to follow the same basic technique. By cooking the mussels with a minimum of moisture, and then reducing the liquids for the base of our marinade, we get an even more intense flavor, as well as an extra little kick of salinity.

By the way, I completely forgot to strain the cooking liquids before making the dressing, which can mean some grit, or tiny pieces of shell getting into your final product, so after everything is reduced, press the onion and juices through a mesh strainer before proceeding.

Most mussels sold at the grocery store are fairly well cleaned, but if yours aren’t, be sure to scrub well, and remove any beards. To ensure top quality, depending on proximity to the store, you can cook a couple when you get home, chill them, and then give them a test taste.

Mussels should have a fresh, sweet, mild, tastes-like-the-ocean flavor, and if yours don’t, or are gritty, or odd in any way, simply take them back, and get a refund. Anyway, that’s the worst-case scenario. The best-case scenario is what you see here, and I really do hope you give these a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 2 pounds of Mussels:
2 pounds black mussels
1 tablespoon olive oil for sautéing onions
1/2 onion, finely diced
pinch of salt
For the marinade:
reserved reduced cooking liquids (about 1-2 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 lemon juiced
2 tablespoons finely diced jalapeño
2 tablespoons champagne, rice, or white wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil, or to taste
extra pinch of salt if needed
red Fresno chili to garnish optional
NOTE: Serve on ice or a cold plate, and not on salt, unless it is very large grain, and won't stick to the shells.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Korean Barbecued Rack of Lamb – That Other Rack of Ribs

While less popular than beef and pork, lamb was the original barbecued meat (Google barbacoa for details), and may be the best suited for cooking over smoky coals. That’s especially true when paired with this very simple Korean-inspired marinade. This really did taste every bit as good as it looked, and that’s saying something.

Lamb has a slight, subtly sweet gaminess, which works perfectly with the funky goodness of our gochujang chili paste, and if you let it soak overnight, you’ll be rewarded with a juicy interior as well. I love using rack for this, since it’s more tender, and easier to work with than leg, and a little more user friendly than chops.

You should find gochujang at any grocery store where the cool kids shop, but if not, it’s available online. Here is the one I used, just in case that matters. If you do happen to splurge for a jar, trust me, you’ll use it all by the end of summer.

By the way, the ingredient amounts below will only allow for a few tablespoons of sauce, once reduced. If you want more, just double the amounts, and save half to add to your reduction. A little more sauce probably isn’t a bad idea, especially if there’s going to be rice around. Either way, I really do hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 4 Portions:
2 trimmed racks of lamb (about 1 pound each)
2 tablespoons gochujang chili paste
6 cloves crushed garlic
1/4 cup finely minced green onions
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Friday, June 22, 2018

Romesco Sauce – Cold Sauce Monte Rushmore for Sure

It’s not unusual for me to get requests for recipes I’ve already done before, but over the last few years, I seemed to be getting an abnormal number of requests for romesco sauce. Knowing I had already filmed it, I’d reply with something polite, like what don’t you understand about using Google?

Well, I’d like to apologize to all those people I blew off, since while it’s true I posted a video for romesco, it was actually many years ago, on About.com, which has ceased to exist. In fairness, I’ve done over 1,800 videos, as well as lived over 54 years, so hopefully a little recipe related forgetfulness would be forgiven.

Anyway, it was high time to update this Spanish classic, since it’s one of the all-time great summer sauces. It’s pretty much perfect with anything off the grill, especially vegetables and seafood, and that’s how we usually enjoy this, but there’re so many other places where this can shine. It makes for an unbelievable sandwich spread, as well as perfect “secret ingredient” for your favorite potato or pasta salad dressings.

Like most sauces and condiments, this begs for personalization; whether we’re talking the level of heat, or ratio between the ingredients, or how smooth or course you grind it, you shouldn’t hesitate to adapt this to your tastes. But, no matter how you tweak this, or what you serve with it, I really do hope you make some soon, and then keep making it all summer. Enjoy!


Ingredients for about 3 cups:
3 large red bell peppers, fire-roasted, seeded, and peeled
1/2 cup olive oil
8 cloves peeled garlic
1 cup cubed stale bread
3/4 cup roasted almonds
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Spanish Garlic Shrimp (Gambas al Ajillo) – Top of the Tapas

If you ever find yourself in a Spanish restaurant, and they don’t have some version of this garlic shrimp recipe on the menu, immediately get up from your table, and leave. This would be the equivalent of a French bistro that doesn’t serve steak frites. What about vegetarian Spanish restaurants and French bistros? That’s a trick question, since those aren’t a thing.

Anyway, the point here is that every Spanish restaurant serves this, and for very good reasons. It’s fast to make, gorgeous to look at, and, if you’re into garlic, one of the most delicious things you’ll ever eat. Just be sure to use nice fresh, frozen shrimp. Allow me to explain.

Unless you live in a few choice locations, it’s rare to find true fresh shrimp at the market. All they do is thaw some frozen, and put it in the case, where it sits until you buy it, which is why it really makes a lot more sense to purchase frozen. Of course, not all frozen shrimp is created equal, so I encourage you to research the best sources, but the point is you don’t want something already thawed.

Speaking of which, I thaw mine by running cold water into the bowl of frozen shrimp, let it sit for about 10 minutes, before draining, and repeating once more. After that it should be fully thawed, at which point the shrimp can be drained, and prepped.

The last tip I’ll give, is to make sure you have all your ingredients together before you head to the stove, since start to finish, this only takes minutes to complete. This is another reason it’s so great for a party, since you can prep everything ahead of time, and finish it whenever you’re ready to serve. But, whether you feature this at a party, or not, I really do hope you give this amazing Spanish garlic shrimp recipe a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 2 Spanish Garlic Shrimp Portions:
1 pound peeled and *deveined shrimp (look for the 21-25 per pound size or larger)
kosher salt to taste
1 teaspoon hot, smoked paprika, optional
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves peeled garlic, slice thin
2 tablespoons dry sherry wine (or white wine and a pinch of sugar)
1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley

* This video from Allrecipes shows how to properly devein shrimp

Friday, June 15, 2018

Beet-Cured Salmon Gravlax – Easier and Slower Than You Think

Even though I only do it once every few years or so, making salmon gravlax at home is a fun weekend project, and with very little effort, you can produce some very impressive results. I’ve always done this with the traditional fresh dill sprigs, but after enjoying a beet-stained version at Plaj, I decided to try my hand. And, also stain my hand.

If you’re just doing a small tail piece like I did, these times and measurements should get you close to what you see here, but if you're feeling adventurous, and want to do something larger, then you may have to do some research for techniques that work better when doing a thicker piece of fish.

Those slightly more complicated methods involve turning, draining, and basting, to account for a longer curing time. So what I’m trying to say is, you can avoid all that by just doing a smaller piece, which, unless you’re hosting a large party, should be plenty. Speaking of large parties, and the litigious people that sometime attend them, please be sure to get your salmon from a reliable source.

I think a brick works great for a press, but anything that weighs a few pounds would be fine, as long as it’s large, and flat enough to distribute the weight evenly. A book with a few cans of soup on it would do the trick. Regardless of how you press yours, once unwrapped, sliced, and served on a toasted bagel, I think you’ll agree it was worth the wait. So, I really do hope you give this gravlax technique a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 6 to 10 ounces of Gravlax:
8 to 12 ounce tail section of fresh salmon with skin on (scaled)
1/4 cup kosher salt
1/4 cup white sugar
cayenne and/or freshly ground black pepper to taste
enough grated beet and/or fresh dill springs to thickly cover fish

- Press with something heavy, and let cure in fridge for 1 1/2 days, or until salmon is firm, and translucent when sliced. You can carefully unwrap, and poke to test, and then rewrap, and let cure longer if need be.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Bourbon Pepper Pan Sauce – Learning a Skill That Always Thrills

Mastering pan sauces is one the easiest things a home cook can do to raise their culinary game, since it allows one to produce dishes most people only see in restaurants. And not just any restaurants. The really good ones.

By the way, if you’re still looking for a Father’s Day gift, a nice bottle of bourbon, with a little splash going to finish a home-cooked steak, would make quite the one-two punch of manly goodness. And, even if your dad isn’t a sitcom stereotype, who doesn’t enjoy a well-executed pan sauce?

If you’re making this for meat that’s coming off a grill, you can still do the sauce separately, and just keep it warm until the main course is ready. Start with the sautéing garlic in butter step, and finish as shown. Of course, you’ll have to add some coarsely ground black pepper to the sauce, but that’s about the only adjustment.

Like I said in the video, this sauce’s rich, sweet, peppery flavor profile also works wonderfully with pork chops, and grilled chicken. You can also switch up the Bourbon for another liquor, since this really is just a technique video. Regardless of what you use, or what you serve it with, I really do hope you give this great pan sauce a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for two portions:
1 clove minced garlic, sautéed in 1 teaspoon butter
1 ounce bourbon
1/2 cup chicken broth or veal stock
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons cold butter
salt and cayenne to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste

Friday, June 8, 2018

Frangipane Tart – Have Your Cake and Eat Pie Too

Not only is this simple frangipane tart a perfect way to enjoy fresh summer fruit, but it’s also great for those times when you can’t decide whether you want cake or pie. This sort of seems like both to me, and unlike many fancy looking pastries, this one is not at all complicated to make.

Even made free form, with pieced together leftover puff pastry, this was a fairly simple operation. As I mentioned, most people use pie dough for this, and if you do, simply follow the exact same procedure for the pre-baking. Once whatever crust you’re using is baked about halfway, and cooled, it’s ready to fill, top with fruit and bake.

Another great reason to make this is that there’s a good chance one of your guests will ask you which bakery this came from, which will give you the opportunity to say, “Bakery? No, I made this.” But say it really casually, like it was no big thing. This travels well, so don’t be afraid to fish for compliments with this at the next picnic. Either way, I really do hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for Fresh Fruit Frangipane Tart:

For the filling:
1 1/2 tablespoons soft butter
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon white sugar
1 large egg
3/4 cup almond flour, or very finely-ground blanched almonds
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract

For the tart:
enough puff pasty or pie dough for a 9 or 10 inch shallow tart pan
enough fresh fruit to do the job

For the glaze:
3 tablespoons apricot jam 
2 teaspoons water
Bring to a boil in small pan or microwave. Let cool to just warm before brushing on.

- Pre-bake pastry shell at 400 F. for 15 minutes or until it starts to get golden-brown.
- Fill, top, and bake at 375 F. for 30-40 minutes, or until browned and the almond filling is set.
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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Whole Chicken Pie – Finally, a Great Pie with Bones

There’s a restaurant up the street that serves a whole chicken wrapped in brioche, and ever since I saw it, I’ve wanted to do that video. I’ve never actually had it, since it’s $100, and you have to order it a day in advance. I love chicken, but I think I’ll save my hundred dollar bills for more sensible things, like lighting Cuban cigars.

Anyway, I was planning on doing a bread-wrapped bird, when I saw a photo for what looked like a pie crust wrapped chicken. Suddenly, I remembered doing something similar in culinary school, except they made us call the pie dough, “pate brisee,” for some reason, but same idea. That’s when plans changed, and the brioche went bye bye.

When bread’s used, you usually have to peel the soft, flabby skin off before enjoying the meat, but that’s not as big an issue here. Pie crust doesn’t insulate nearly as well, and so the skin gets cooked more thoroughly. This was very noticeable on the breasts, where the skin and crust fused together into some sort of marvelous hybrid. The thicker skin around the thighs didn’t render out quite as well, but even if you do pull off the skin, the meat is moist, tender, and very flavorful.

If you use a 3 1/2 pound chicken for this, then the roasting/resting time should work out, but if your bird is larger, you’ll have to add more time, and should probably use a thermometer to check your work. By the way, this is a technique video, and everything from the stuffing, to the pan sauce ingredients should be adapted to your tastes, but no matter what you use, I really do hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


*This was inspired by the chicken photo from this article about Chef Barbara Lynch.
Ingredients for One Whole Chicken Pie:
1 whole chicken, between 3 1/4 and 3 1/2 pounds
kosher salt as needed
1 recipe buttercrust pastry dough (this was just barely enough)
1 egg beaten with 2 teaspoon of water

For the veggie stuffing:
1/2 yellow onion, small dice
1 small carrot, small dice
1/2 rib celery, small dice
1 to 2 tablespoons minced rosemary or other fresh herb
kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, and cayenne to taste
2 teaspoons olive oil

For the sauce (this is for 4 portions, I only made 2):
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup veggies from inside chicken (pull out while chicken rests, but replace the crust)
salt to taste
2/3 cup white or rose wine
1/3 cup pan drippings and/or splash of stock
4 tablespoons cold butter cut in cubes
Note: This is a rich butter sauce, but a gravy, so you only get a few tablespoons

Friday, June 1, 2018

Homemade Italian Sausage – I Was the Uncle Bill of My Slow Casing Fill

The last time I remember making sausage was with my Uncle Billy many years ago, who was doing his famous dried Italian sausage for Christmas Eve. By the way, I said “making,” but for the record I actually meant mostly watching. Anyway, this fresh version is inspired by those, and while we loved how they came out, I’m kicking myself for not saving a few to dry. That’s how Uncle Bill did them, and they’d be fried after Midnight Mass, and served on bread with roasted red peppers. 

They were incredible, and one of my earliest and most vivid food memories. If you’re going to make your own sausage on a regular basis, you’ll want to get a little more professional sausage-making set-up than I suffered through here.

It did the job, but was slow, even after I figured out what was holding me up. You can also grind meat in a food processor, and there are plenty of videos out there showing how, but then you’ll have to get a sausage stuffer. Speaking of videos, I know I said I’d try to find a link to a more detailed demo using better equipment, but just head over to YouTube and watch literally any other sausage video. Besides, the actual recipe is the hard part.

For a little nicer flavor, you can toast the fennel seeds in a dry pan just until you begin to smell them. This goes for any other whole spices you may want to grind and toss in. Also, if you can manage not to eat them right away, I think letting them dry for a day or two really deepens the flavor, and firms up the texture as well. So, with a wink heavenward to Uncle Billy, I'll close by saying, I really do hope you give these homemade Italian sausages a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for about 8 to 10 Italian Sausages:
3 pounds pork shoulder
28 grams kosher salt (1 ounce)
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons whole fennel seed, toasted
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon anise seed
2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon marjoram
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice berries
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon white sugar
2 tablespoons cold water

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Grain-Free Butter Bread – Going Full Keto

I've always wanted to try making one of these grain-free loaves, and since I've received tons of food wishes for it, I decided to finally give it a go. I very slightly adapted this recipe from one I found at Keto Connect, where they call it the “Best Keto Bread.” Since I basically stole their recipe, I decided not to take their name too, and went with the hopefully appetizing sounding, grain-free butter bread.

Here is the link to the original recipe, and I welcome you to check it out, since they give a lot of tips, as well as other variations, but I did change the technique somewhat. They used a food processor to mix in all the egg whites, whereas I finished by folding. Not sure how big a difference it makes, but I do like to occasionally use a few things I learned in culinary school.

While I really did enjoy this, and it was much more bread-like than I had anticipated, please be sure to manage your expectations appropriately. Without wheat flour and yeast, it’s impossible to get a true bread taste and texture, but if you’re off carbs, and have been dreaming about a nice slice of buttered toast with your eggs, this is well worth a try.

It has a subtle egginess, and faint almond flavor, but overall it’s relatively neutral, and the texture is reminiscent of an extra moist, and spongy white bread. If you wanted to run with my strawberry shortcake idea, you could add a spoon of sugar to the batter, and you’d just be some whipped cream away from a pretty decent, low-carb treat. Either way, I really do hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for one loaf:
1 1/2 cup fine ground almond flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon fine salt
1/4 cup melted butter
6 large egg yolks
6 large egg whites
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar

- Bake at 375 F. for about 30 minutes

Friday, May 25, 2018

Grilled Root Beer Beef – Almost as Good as an Ice Cream Float

I’ve used something very close to this root beer marinade for lamb several times, and had great success, so I’ve been eager to try it with some skewered beef, which didn’t come out quite as well, but could have. Please, let me explain.

Since lamb has a stronger, “gamier” taste, the sweetness of this treatment works perfectly, but I thought it was a little too much for the beef. So, below in the ingredients list, I've made a few adjustments to the honey amount, as well as acidity level.

The beauty of a recipe like this is they’re very easy to adapt, and I’m not just talking about the pre-grill soak, but also the glaze we make with the extra marinade. Once reduced to something thick enough to coat our meat, you’ll want to taste it, and adjust with more heat, sweet, sour, or whatever else you think it needs. One thing mine definitely needed was more salt. I thought the soy was going to be enough, but I should have salted my skewers before they hit the grill, and/or add some salt to the marinade.

Adjustments aside, if you enjoy things like sweet/hot barbecue sauces, bourdon glazes, or even something like teriyaki, you will probably very much enjoy this. Even if you don’t use the marinade, I really loved the technique we used for the flank, which would work beautifully no matter how you flavor this. Either way, I really hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 4 skewers/portions:
1 whole flank steak (about 1 1/2 pounds)
For the marinade
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper
2 tablespoons ketchup
honey, optional (I used 2 tablespoons, but would omit next time)
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons white or cider vinegar (I didn't add, but it needed it)
1 bottle (12 ounces) good quality root beer
kosher salt to season skewers generously