Wood-Fired Hanger Steak Marinated in Tamarind Recado With Salsa Verde

— Spring 2017
Executive chef Troy Stauffer of City Club Raleigh in North Carolina prefers the consistency and flavor of wagyu meats for all steak cuts. He likes to serve this juicy and slightly spicy marinated Mexican-style hanger steak with roasted tomatillo salsa verde, warm tortillas, gaucho beans, and cold beer.

3/4 cup water
1/4 cup tamarind paste
4 ounces panela, piloncillo, or any unrefined brown sugar
1 pint grape tomatoes
1 Vidalia onion, chopped
8 garlic cloves, peeled
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
1 lime, juiced
1 tablespoon salt
1 can (4 ounces) chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
Salsa Verde (recipe follows)
6 hanger steaks (10 ounces each)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. For the recado marinade, place water, tamarind paste, and panela in a small pot and simmer until the paste is soft and the sugar melted. On a sheet pan, roast the tomatoes, onion, and garlic in the oven until they start to brown. Remove from the oven, cool slightly, and mix the roasted vegetables and the oregano, lime, salt, and chipotle chilies in a blender until smooth. Add the tamarind paste and panela mixture to the blender and combine all.

Pour the marinade in a large bowl and add the steaks. Coat the steaks thoroughly and marinate for up to an hour in
the refrigerator.

Prepare a grill for medium-high heat and oil the grate. Remove the steaks from the recado marinade and grill them over direct heat. Turn occasionally until cooked to desired doneness, about 8 minutes for medium-rare. Transfer them to a cutting
board and let rest before slicing. Serve with warm or chilled
Salsa Verde.

Yield: 6 servings

SALSA VERDE

1 pound tomatillos, cut in half, husks removed
2 large poblano chilies
2 serrano chilies
1 large Vidalia onion, sliced thick4 garlic cloves, roasted
4 epazote leaves
1 cup chopped cilantro, stems removed
1 tablespoon salt

Heat an outdoor grill to medium. Place tomatillos, chilies, and onion in a grill pan over indirect heat on the grill. Cook until the vegetables become slightly blistered and soft throughout, about 15 minutes. Cool slightly and chop the chilies in a rough chop and remove stems (Note: Wear gloves so the spicy peppers don’t burn you).

In a processor, combine the grilled vegetables with the garlic, epazote leaves, cilantro, and salt. Puree until smooth and reserve.

ABOUT THE CUT Sometimes used as a bistro cut in restaurants and a classic cut used for steak frites, the hanger steak is the most flavorful inexpensive steak for the grill and tastes even more tender when marinated. — Executive chef Troy Stauffer, City Club Raleigh, Raleigh, N.C.

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