In fact, six pounds worth. Flap steak, the unflatteringly named cut, is similar to skirt and flank in that it comes from the less tender regions of the animal. Often cheaper than more popular cuts, this little underdog of the beef world has a wonderful meaty flavor and fine texture when prepared properly. The only place I ever find it is Costco, and they package it in 4-pound lots of strips, which is great for a party, or to break down into smaller parcels and freeze.
Of all the inexpensive cuts of beef, flap is one of the most versatile. Like skirt or flank steak, it benefits from marinating and being cooked on high, dry heat, whether grilled, broiled, pan-fried or stir-fried. It’s vital to cut the meat very thinly across the grain, and it is at its best not too much past medium-rare.
If it ever threatens to start burning on the exterior before the center is done, you can slide it on over to the cooler side of the grill for some more gently cooking. As with all meat, it benefits from a few minutes of resting before you slice into it. Since its shape, thickness, and proclivity for marinades makes it similar to flank steak, you can use it pretty much interchangeably. Think of it as flank steak’s tastier, sexier cousin.
For a little zing to the meal, our enhancers were a delicious Mojo Marinade, followed up by an accompaniment of Chimichurri Salsa. And since fresh corn is just starting to appear in the food markets, we paired the steak with Sautéed Corn Salad with Ricotta Salata and Basil.
But let’s talk about the party—the real reason we were “giving a flap.” Eight of us gathered on our patio and started with a Midnight Kiss—the kind you drink, that is. Rosanne brought a premade concoction with blue curacao and vodka (among other ingredients) then topped it off with a bottle of white Prosecco, let me tell you, those definitely got the party started!
For a pre-dinner nibble, Barb dished out a large platter of bruschetta, a perfect nosh for those drinks!
I decided to add a challenge to the festivities with a guess-the-ingredients contest. Since the flap meat was going to be dressed with a chimichurri sauce, I gave each couple a small sample to taste and smell and then list the nine ingredients. The couple with the most correct answers won a gift—and that honor went to Brad and Barb.
The guests are hard at work trying to decipher exactly what the chimichurri consists of.
Barb and Brad
Fran and Grant
Rosanne and Gary
As another side dish for the feast, Rosanne contributed a yummy lentil salad surrounded by a mini caprese salad.
And what better way to finish a summer meal than with homemade brownies and a choice of three ice cream flavors from Goodnoe’s? Thanks for the finale Fran!
After a round of coffee, the clock struck the midnight hour and it was time for the gang to make their departures. After all, another hot summers day would be dawning before we knew it… time for some beauty rest…
- 1 1/2 cups fresh orange juice (5-6 oranges)
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (2-3 lemons)
- 1/2 cup fresh lime juice (2-3 limes)
- 1/2 cup fresh oregano, coarsely chopped
- 1/3 cup corn or vegetable oil
- 10 garlic cloves, minced
- 2-3 jalapeños, sliced into rounds (or seeded and cut into half-rounds)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk until salt is dissolved.
- Reserve 2/3 cup marinade for sauce. Put flap meat (pork or seafood) in a glass, stainless-steel, or ceramic dish. Toss with remaining marinade. Cover; chill for 3-8 hours.
- Remove meat from marinade, pat dry, and grill.
- Spoon reserved sauce over meat or fish just before serving.
This recipe for a colorful chimichurri sauce can also double as a marinade along with being an accompaniment to all cuts of beef.
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more
3-4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced or minced
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 Fresno chile or red jalapeño, finely chopped
1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro
1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh oregano
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Combine vinegar, 1 tsp. salt, garlic, shallot, and chile in a food processor and let stand for 10 minutes. Add in cilantro, parsley, and oregano, and grind until well mixed.
- Drizzle oil into food processor until well combined.
- Put meat and marinade in a large ziploc bag.
- Chill for at least 3 hours or overnight.
- Remove meat from marinade, pat dry, and grill.
Sautéed Corn Salad with Ricotta Salata and Basil
Sautéed Corn Salad
I find it helpful to cut the kernels off the cob over a small rimmed baking sheet.
- 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
- 3 garlic cloves, sliced thin
- 4 ears corn, kernels cut from cobs (4 cups)
- Salt and pepper
- 6 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 1/2 ounces ricotta salata cheese, crumbled (1/3 cup)
- 1/4 cup shredded fresh basil
- 1-2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- Heat oil and garlic in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until garlic is light golden brown and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Using slotted spoon, transfer garlic to large bowl, leaving oil in skillet.
- Return skillet to medium-high heat and heat until oil is shimmering. Add corn and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, without stirring, until corn is browned on bottom and beginning to pop, about 3 minutes.
- Stir and continue to cook, stirring once or twice, until corn is spotty brown all over, 2 to 3 minutes longer. Transfer corn to bowl with garlic.
- Stir in tomatoes, half of ricotta salata, basil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Season with salt, pepper, and remaining lemon juice to taste. Sprinkle with remaining ricotta salata and serve.