“Thrill of the Grill” authors Chris Schlesinger and John Willoughby make it look easy. And fun.
In their new book, “Grill It,” the experts spell out their best tips for firing up the grill and their favorite recipes for the flame. They’ve got ideas for the grates that will take you way beyond burgers and dogs.
They bring together the basic flavors from other cultures in fun “Flavor Footprint” pages, to share ideas for giving foods a Mexican-Latin, West Indies-Caribbean or Chinese flair (among others).
Inspiring photography might make you daring enough to try some unusual fare just in time for your Fourth of July bash.
Start simple and add a rub to your favorite meat, try a new sauce to bring out the smoky grill flavor, or put it all together for Grilled Halibut with Lime-Chipotle Mayo and Spicy Pecans, Grilled Sirloin Skewers with Aromatic Herbs, Lime and Chiles, or Mediterranean Chopped Salad on Grill Bread.
Here’s a recipe from the book:
Cumin-Crusted Grilled Skirt Steak Tacos with Orange-Chili Glaze and Lime-Marinated Avocados
From “Grill It,” Chris Schlesinger and John Willoughby
For the glaze:
1 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
1 tablespoon tomato puree
1 tablespoon pureed chipotle chilies, or 1 tablespoon chili powder
For the avocados:
2 ripe but firm avocados
Juice of 6 limes (about 3/4 cup)
1/2 cup freshly chopped fresh cilantro
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
For the meat:
2 1/2 pounds trimmed skirt steak, cut into 4 pieces
1 large red onion, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch thick rounds (keep rings together)
3/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup cumin seeds
1 tablespoon paprika
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
For the wraps:
12 corn tortillas, 6 to 8 inches across
Combine the orange juice, vinegar, tomato puree and chipotles or chili powder in a medium saucepan; on the stovetop, bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer vigorously until the mixture has reduced by two-thirds and become slightly syrupy (30 to 40 minutes). Remove the glaze from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
While the glaze reduces, halve, pit and peel the avocados; cut each half into thin slices. Put the avocado slices, lime juice and cilantro in a bowl and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss gently until the avocado is evenly coated, then transfer to a serving dish, cover and set aside until serving time.
Build a fire in your grill. When the coals are all ignited, the flames have died down and the temperature is hot (when you can hold your hand about 5 inches above the grate for only 1 to 2 seconds), you’re ready to cook.
Rub the steaks and onion slices with olive oil and sprinkle evenly with cumin, paprika, salt and pepper.
When the fire is ready, put the steaks and onions on the grill directly over the coals and cook until they are done to your liking (The steak should take 4 to 5 minutes per side for medium-rare). Brush the steaks generously with the glaze during the final 45 seconds of cooking on each side.
Transfer the steaks to a cutting board, cover loosely with foil and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Thinly slice the steak on the bias across the grain, arrange the slices on a serving platter with grilled onions, and drizzle with the remaining glaze.
While the steaks are resting, put the tortillas around the edges of the grill and cook briefly, flipping every 10 seconds or so, until they are soft and pliable, about 1 minute. Wrap the stack of tortillas in a large napkin or foil, and take them to the table along with the lime-marinated avocados and the steak, so your guests can “roll their own.”
Yield: 4 servings
Nutrition per serving: Unable to calculate.
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