Flank steak, sometimes known as skirt steak, is one of the most popular cuts of beef. While it is very easy to prepare, it requires a somewhat lengthy marinating time to fully bring out its unique flavour. Follow the recipe below to prepare the perfect grilled flank steak.
What is flank steak?
The grilled flank steak recipe first calls for a choice cut of beef flank steak. Flank steak is taken from the cow's diaphragm and transverse abdominal muscles. It is a long and narrow cut of meat with an abundance of connective tissue, given that it comes from the diaphragm area. However, proper cooking will allow this tissue to be easily broken down or cut along the grain.
Flank steaks can be inner and outer and they do not differ to any great extent, except of course for the area from which they are taken. The inner flank steak is taken from the transverse muscle of the abdomen and the outer flank steak is taken from the diaphragm. Therefore, as you can see, there is not much difference between these cuts.
A complete flank steak can be between 50 and 60 centimetres long and is around 1.5 centimetres wide. Throughout the entire cut it is possible to see the coarse grain, which is the one to follow in order to be able to cut the meat easily. The steak is covered with a gelatinous membrane, which must be removed before cooking. You can either remove this yourself or you can ask the butcher to do it for you.
Recipe for flank steak
- Half a kilo of flank steak.
- Two cloves of garlic.
- Three tablespoons of olive oil.
- Two tablespoons of honey.
- Three tablespoons of soy sauce.
- Two tablespoons of red cooking wine.
- Freshly ground black pepper.
- Cooking spray.
- The first thing to do is to clean the meat carefully. To achieve this, remove the membrane from the flank steak by making a small cut in the membrane and pull it out with your fingers. Again, if you have the opportunity, ask the butcher to do this for you.
- It is advisable to prepare the marinade for the meat the previous night or very early in the morning on the day you are going to cook it.
- Use a sharp knife to score the flank steak. Score the steak along the grain of the meat. Leave a one-centimetre gap.
- Mix all the ingredients, except for the cooking spray, into a large bowl that will hold the flank steak. You can either cut the steak in half or place it whole into the bowl.
- You will need to peel and finely chop the garlic before adding it. In addition, use half a tablespoon of freshly ground black pepper and to this tablespoon add the juice of half a lemon or lime.
- Mix in the ingredients fully so that they are nicely blended.
- Once the mixture is ready, add the flank steak. It is important that the marinade covers the steak evenly.
- Cover the container with clingfilm or aluminium foil and place in the refrigerator for at least two hours. It is recommended that the meat is marinated early in the morning or the night before, so that it is thoroughly infused with the flavours of the ingredients.
- Remove the container with the meat one hour before cooking. It is very important that the meat is at room temperature before cooking commences, otherwise the outside of the meat will be hot but the inside will still be raw.
- The meat should be cooked at a high temperature. At this point you should preheat the grill until the desired temperature is achieved.
- Once the grill is hot, open the lid and spray some cooking oil on the grill.
- Place the meat on the grill and close the lid.
- Set the grill for a cooking time of approximately 12 minutes.
- Halfway through cooking, open the lid and turn the meat over. Always use tongs to handle the meat once it is on the grill. Never use a fork to turn the meat as this causes the steak to lose its delicate juices.
- After 12 minutes of cooking, remove the meat and place it on a platter. Cover the dish with foil to allow the flank steak to finish cooking. This will take around 5 to 10 minutes.
- Cut the flank steak into thin slices, carefully following the length of the grain.
- Serve to diners.
What is the best accompaniment for the flank steak recipe?
Flank steak is a versatile cut that can be served with any number of side dishes - it all depends on the individual preferences of your guests and the time you have available. You can prepare potatoes in various different styles as a delicious accompaniment, the most highly recommended being fried, mashed or roasted.
It is also possible to accompany the flank steak with grilled vegetables. If you already have the grill on, you can simultaneously grill the vegetables for a few minutes. Use red pepper, courgette and onion. You could consider serving them as if they were skewers, neatly placing the vegetables onto a wooden stick.