Fire Up the Grill!

Grilled Skirt Steak Pinwheels, with a side of Grilled Tomatoes—really can’t get any easier than this and still pull off an impressive dinner in about a half hour. Though the meat filling is made with just a few ingredients, it packs a huge flavor punch that’s savory, zingy, and fresh. To add even more flavor I added a couple cloves of finely chopped garlic which was not part of the original recipe.

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And their is almost nothing better in the summertime than Grilled Tomatoes! For the best results, use in-season, round tomatoes that are ripe yet a bit firm so they will hold their shape on the grill. (Plum tomatoes may be used, but they will be drier in texture. If using plum tomatoes, halve them lengthwise.) Supermarket vine-ripened tomatoes will work but won’t be as flavorful.

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Salting the tomatoes allows some of their juices to be drawn out so that they are less wet on the grill for better browning. Grilling the tomatoes cut sides down first allows them to caramelize before flipping onto their skin sides; the cradle-like skins helps to hold the tomatoes together as they continued to soften.

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To round off the meal and add even more fiber and goodness, grill some asparagus spears lightly rubbed with a good EVOO and sprinkled with salt and pepper. They’ll take approximately the same amount of time as the tomatoes—depending on thickness of course.

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Grilled Skirt Steak Pinwheels

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 whole 1-1/2-lb. skirt steak or 2 3/4-lb. pieces, trimmed of excess surface fat
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 oz. coarsely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (about 1 cup)
  • 2 Tbs. finely grated lemon zest (from 2 large)
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (from 1 large bunch)
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped (optional)

Directions

  1. If the steak is whole, cut it to make two even pieces. Lay the steak out on a work surface and cover with plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet, gently pound the steak until it is at least 4 inches wide and no more than 1/3 inch thick (it’s OK if one end is thinner). Season both sides of each steak with salt and pepper.
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  2. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the steak, leaving a 1/2-inch border, and then sprinkle the lemon zest and parsley over the cheese. Press on the topping to flatten it.
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  3. Working with one steak at a time and starting at the thinnest end, roll the steak up around the filling.
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  4. Tie a length of butcher’s twine around the middle, then tie two more pieces of twine around the pinwheel equidistant from the middle to each end. Cut the roll in half along the middle piece of twine and remove that piece of twine; you will now have two tied wheels.
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  5. Trim the ends for a flat surface, if necessary. Repeat with other steak to get 4 pinwheels total. (The wheels may be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for a few hours; let them sit at room temperature while the grill heats.)
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  6. Prepare a high (500°F to 600°F) charcoal or gas grill fire. Cook the pinwheels cut sides down, flipping once, until browned on both sides and cooked to your liking, about 6 minutes per side for medium rare (135°F). Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.
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Adapted from a recipe by Pat LaFrieda from Fine Cooking

Grilled Tomatoes

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Grilled Tomatoes

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

To serve the tomatoes as a simple side dish, top them with the reserved juice, 2 tablespoons of torn fresh basil leaves, 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil, and flake sea salt to taste. This recipe can easily be doubled.

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds ripe tomatoes, cored and halved along equator (juice reserved
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

Directions

  1. Toss tomatoes with oil, salt, and pepper in large bowl. Let stand for at least 15 minutes or up to 1 hour. Reserve juice if using. If also grilling asparagus, toss with EVOO and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
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  2. FOR A CHARCOAL GRILL: Open bottom vent completely. Light large chimney starter filled with charcoal briquettes. When top coals are partially covered with ash, pour evenly over grill. Set cooking grate in place, cover, and open lid vent completely. Heat grill until hot, about 5 minutes.
    FOR A GAS GRILL: Turn all burners to high, cover, and heat grill until hot, about 15 minutes. Leave all burners on high.
  3. Clean and oil cooking grate. Place tomatoes, cut sides down, on grill and cook (covered if using gas) until tomatoes are charred and beginning to soften, 4 to 6 minutes.
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  4. Using tongs or thin metal spatula, carefully flip tomatoes and continue to cook (covered if using gas) until skin sides are charred and juice bubbles, 4 to 6 minutes longer. Transfer tomatoes to large plate.
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Tomatoes can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.

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