Don’t skirt the flavour

This cheap and tasty cut of meat is al­ways an ex­cel­lent op­tion

Central and North Burnett Times - - EASY EATING - THE WEEK­END COOK with Mag­gie Cooper mag­gies.col­umn@big­

IT HAS been a busy few weeks where I live. Be­cause the weather has been sti­fling, I did a lot of cook­ing out­side on my medium-sized gas bar­bie. It has a domed lid and does a great job; the flavour is not as good as a char­coal grill but it’s not bad at all.

If you are han­ker­ing for a steak and you have a bud­get, your choices are limited. I moved last year to a place that boasts a fab­u­lous shop that sells cuts of meat that are not read­ily avail­able in su­per­mar­kets, and one of those is skirt steak. It’s worth­while hav­ing a chat to your butcher to see if you can buy this cut; it’s cheap and full of flavour.

Skirt is a cut from the mid­sec­tion; it is flat and the grain is very ob­vi­ous. Care must be taken to cook it cor­rectly to avoid tough­ness but when you get the hang of it, you’ll be pleased with the re­sults.

Mar­i­nat­ing the meat, prefer­ably overnight, is a key strat­egy, as is bring­ing the steak to room tem­per­a­ture be­fore cook­ing for a min­i­mal time and rest­ing for 15 min­utes be­fore slic­ing across the grain. Serve to­day’s recipe, carne asada (Span­ish for roast meat) wrapped in tor­tillas with lime juice, salad greens and av­o­cado for a palate-pleas­ing bud­get meal.

Carne asada Serves 4

IN­GRE­DI­ENTS: 1⁄3 cup olive oil 1⁄2 cup soy sauce cloves 4 gar­lic, peeled and crushed 1 tbs sugar 4 limes, di­vided 2 tsp ground cumin seed 2 pieces skirt steak (about 500g) to serve: tor­tillas, av­o­cado slices, tomato wedges, salad leaves, sliced span­ish or green onions, fresh herbs, salsa

METHOD: Com­bine oil, soy sauce, gar­lic, sugar, the juice of two of the limes and the cumin in a non-re­ac­tive bowl or large zi­plock bag. Add the steaks and turn to coat. Re­frig­er­ate overnight. Be­fore cook­ing, re­move meat from the fridge and al­low to reach room tem­per­a­ture; the time will vary ac­cord­ing to the air tem­per­a­ture.

Pre­heat the bar­be­cue to high. Oil the grill lightly and place steaks over the heat.

Cook for four min­utes, then turn and cook for a fur­ther three min­utes. Do not over­cook or the meat will be tough. Re­move steak to a warm plate and cover with foil; let stand for 12–15 min­utes. TO SERVE: Slice meat into thin strips across the grain. Pile on to tor­tillas along with av­o­cado, tomato, onion and salad leaves and gar­nish with fresh herbs.


Use cheap and flavour­ful skirt steak to make carne asada.

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