Psyched! Yes, we were pumped when we came across this fun recipe from Cooks Illustrated. While impressive looking, Gas-Grilled Stuffed Flank Steak, is not a time-intensive endeavor, especially the grilling aspect. One look at the number of steps and you may disagree, but trust me, it’s not a big deal. Exude some charm and persuade someone to assist you, it’ll be easier when you tie the rolled meat. Oh, and after tying, cut off the extra string so the pesky things don’t cause a fire.
It’s almost impossible to find a 2 1/2 pound flank steak. Ours was just over 1 1/2 pounds and it made 9 pinwheels, plenty for 4 people. If you plan on serving to a larger crowd—which next time we do—just purchase two steaks of near equal size.
To get the filling to stay put in the stuffed flank steak, butterfly the meat, split it horizontally and open it like a book. Once stuffed and rolled, the meat holds up well on the grill when you use both skewers and twine to secure the layers. When you are done with the prep work, they resemble large meat lollipops!
Freezing the steak for 30 minutes helped make the butterflying easier. Make sure to have both wooden skewers and twine for this recipe. Depending on the steak’s size, you may have between 8 and 12 pinwheels of stuffed meat at the end of step 2.
Don’t be surprised if some of the wooden skewers catch fire while grilling, ours did and we had soaked them all day! Just blow out the flames as needed.
A pictorial of preparing the meat roll:
Freeze the meat for 30 minutes before you try to slice into it.
Butterfly without cutting completely through the other edge.
Pound flank steak into an even thickness and a rough rectangle.
Spread herb mixture evenly over surface of steak.
Lay prosciutto evenly over steak, leaving 2-inch border along top edge.
Cover prosciutto with even layer of cheese, leaving 2-inch border along top edge.
Starting from bottom edge and rolling away from you, roll beef into tight log and place on cutting board seam-side down.
Gas-Grilled Stuffed Flank Steak
- 2 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through garlic press (about 2 teaspoons)
- 1 small shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves, finely minced
- 1 teaspoon sage leaves, finely minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for oiling grate
- 1 flank steak (2- to 2 ½-pounds)
- 4 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
- 4 ounces thinly sliced provolone
- 8 – 12 skewers soaked in water for 30 minutes
- Kosher salt and ground black pepper
Starting ½ inch from end of rolled steak, evenly space 8 to twelve 14-inch pieces of butcher’s twine at 1-inch intervals underneath steak, tying middle string first. Cut off any additional string above the knot to prevent flare-ups.
Skewer beef directly through outermost flap of steak near seam through each piece of string (almost impossible), allowing skewer to extend ½ inch on opposite side.
Using chef’s knife, slice roll between pieces of twine into 1-inch-thick pinwheels.
Once sliced down, sprinkle the pinwheels with salt and pepper.
Notice the small extra pieces of meat thrown in with the pinwheels? After we rolled the log, we had to trim the rough edges and Russ didn’t want to toss them away, so he tossed them on the grill instead… a mini appetizer!
- Combine garlic, shallot, parsley, sage, and olive oil in small bowl. Butterfly and pound flank steak into rough rectangle.
- With steak positioned so that grain runs parallel to edge of counter and opened side faces up, spread herb mixture evenly over surface of steak. Lay prosciutto evenly over steak, leaving 2-inch border along top edge. Cover prosciutto with even layer of cheese, leaving 2-inch border along top edge.
- Starting from bottom edge and rolling away from you, roll beef into tight log and place on cutting board seam-side down.
- Starting ½ inch from end of rolled steak, evenly space 8 to twelve 14-inch pieces of butcher’s twine at 1-inch intervals underneath steak. Tie middle string first; then working from outermost strings toward center, tightly tie roll and turn tied steak 90 degrees so seam is facing you.
- Skewer beef directly through outermost flap of steak near seam through each piece of string, allowing skewer to extend ½ inch on opposite side. Using chef’s knife, slice roll between pieces of twine into 1-inch-thick pinwheels. Season pinwheels lightly with kosher salt and black pepper.
- Turn all burners to high and heat with lid down until very hot, about 15 minutes. Scrape grate clean with grill brush. Dip wad of paper towels in oil; holding wad with tongs, wipe cooking grate. Leave primary burner on high and turn off other burner(s).
- Grill pinwheels directly over hot side of grill until well browned, 3 to 6 minutes. Using tongs, flip pinwheels; grill until second side is well browned, 3 to 5 minutes longer.
- Transfer pinwheels to cooler side of grill, cover, and continue to cook until center of pinwheels registers 125 degrees on instant-read thermometer, 1 to 4 minutes (slightly thinner pinwheels may not need time on cooler side of grill).
- Transfer pinwheels to large plate, tent loosely with foil, and let rest 5 minutes. Remove and discard skewers and twine and serve immediately.
1 thought on “Weekend BBQ. Make it Happen.”
Mmmmm, just wanted to vouch that these are delicious! In my opinion, an aged provolone – BelGioioso’s sharp provolone is pretty easy to find around here – makes a big difference. Your pinwheels look so much nicer than mine; even with the nice illustrations in my Cook’s Illustrated magazine, I still managed to get completely confused and make pinwheels of various sizes. Got it all figured out for next time anyways, hehe. Despite the challenges, we loved this recipe so much! I made half of mine as the variation that uses spinach and pine nuts instead of the prosciutto. Kenji mentioned using Asiago in that one for his article, so while he didn’t say anything about the Asiago in the actual recipe text, I used Asiago with the spinach variation and LOVED it. The funny thing was that my husband and I both strongly preferred one of the variations over the other (he loved the original with prosciutto and provolone, I loved the spinach/pine nuts variation with Asiago), and found the other one’s favorite kind of “meh”, which I suspect was because of the different flavors of the cheeses. Anyway, this recipe was the BOMB, just amazing decadence on a plate, and it deserves a lot of love 🙂