As summer winds down, I find myself grilling even more. Trying to squeeze out every last drop of fresh summer goodness, before giving way to the rib-sticking comfort foods of fall and winter.
Grilled flank steak is one of our favorites. I love that I can prepare several at a time: preparing the marinade in the morning and putting one marinated flank steak in the fridge for dinner, and a couple more in the freezer for meals another night.
This flank steak has a wonderful smoky, slightly spicy flavor. Which went perfectly with this Chipotle Lime Quinoa and White Bean Salad. Quinoa (KEEN-wa), is a gluten-free grain that has a similar texture to couscous, but with a slightly nutty flavor (which makes sense since it is actually the seed portion of a grain).
Grilled Chipotle Flank Steak
2 chipotle peppers in adobo
1 Tbs adobo sauce (from chipotle pepper can)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
¼ cup orange juice
Juice of 1 lime
2 Tbs honey
1 Tbs red wine vinegar
1 tsp oregano
¼ tsp coarsely ground black pepper
½ tsp kosher salt
1 flank steak (about 2 lb)
Combine everything except the steak in a blender, and process until peppers are chopped. Place flank steak in a Ziploc bag or glass baking dish, and add the marinade. Refrigerate for 4-6 hours or overnight (or freeze in the Ziploc bag until another day).
Heat grill. Remove steak from marinade. Brush grill lightly with oil. Grill steak for 7-8 minutes per side for medium rare (adjust time based on thickness of meat and heat of grill). Let meat rest for 5-10 minutes. Slice across the grain.
Serve with Chipotle Lime Quinoa and White Bean Salad OR use it as a base for fajitas with grilled onions and peppers in tortillas.
Adapted from The Perfect Pantry
Chipotle Lime Quinoa and White Bean Salad
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 can white beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups fresh corn, cut from the cob (or 1 can corn)
½ cup chopped red bell pepper
2-3 green onions, chopped (about ¼ cup)
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
2 limes, juiced (about 6-8 Tbs)
Zest of one lime
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1-2 chipotle peppers, finely chopped
1-2 teaspoons adobo sauce (from can of chipotle peppers)
Cook quinoa according to package directions. Cool.
In a large bowl, combine cooled quinoa, beans, corn, red pepper, green onions and cilantro.
In a small bowl, stir together the lime juice and zest, olive oil, salt, garlic powder, chipotle peppers and adobo sauce. Stir into quinoa mixture. Cover and chill until serving.
Note: This can also be made with cooked brown rice or couscous instead of quinoa.
Adapted from Picky Palate
This meal makes a quick but flavorful last-minute dinner.
Sauté a few chicken breasts (I like them pounded thin for faster, more even cooking), mix 4 ingredients for a tangy herb-infused cream sauce and serve with some fresh vegetables and/or this quick pilaf.
This pilaf uses the grain quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) which has a wonderful chewy, nutty flavor. It can often be substituted in rice dishes. It cooks quickly, about 15 minutes, and is full of nutritious fiber, protein and amino acids. As it is technically not a grain, but a seed, it is also gluten-free. We spent a few weeks eating gluten free as we were doing some food elimination allergy testing, and quinoa was one of my favorite new ingredients. We are back to eating wheat/gluten, but quinoa is here to stay!
Chicken with Mustard Cream Sauce
4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt, pepper and garlic powder
1/4 cup white wine, or chicken broth
1 cup heavy cream
2-3 Tbs Dijon mustard
1 Tbs chopped fresh thyme or oregano (or 1 tsp dried)
Place chicken breasts between two pieces of plastic wrap. Pound chicken breasts until thin. (If the chicken breasts are especially large, cut breasts in half crosswise-through entire breast-before pounding) In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken. Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Sauté until cooked through and nicely browned, 10 to 12 minutes, turning once. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic powder again after turning. Transfer to a plate; keep warm.
Pour wine into hot skillet; cook, stirring, until almost completely reduced, about 2-3 minutes. Whisk in cream, mustard, and thyme. Cook, whisking, until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes.
Return chicken (and any accumulated chicken juices) to skillet. Heat through. Right before serving, pour a little cream sauce on plate. Place chicken on top, and drizzle remaining sauce over chicken.
Adapted from Framed
2 Tbs butter
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic
1 cup quinoa, rinsed in a fine mesh strainer
2 cups chicken broth
1 tsp Italian seasoning ( 1 Tbs chopped fresh herbs)
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
1 cup chopped vegetables (asparagus, peas, carrots
——–mushrooms, broccoli, peppers, green onions, etc)
Heat butter in a saucepan. Add onion and garlic (and mushrooms or peppers, if using). Sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add rinsed quinoa, broth and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Add longer-cooking vegetables, like carrots or broccoli. Reduce heat, cover, and cook for 15 minutes, adding shorter-cooking vegetables, like asparagus, peas or green onions, 3-4 minutes before end of cooking time. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.