Grilled Flank Steak with Salsa Cruda
- Salsa Cruda:
- 5 or 6 vine-ripened tomatoes
- 1 onion, sliced into thick rings
- 1 large red bell pepper
- 2 jalapeno chiles
- 6 to 7 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing bread
- Gray salt and freshly ground pepper
- Wooden skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes
- 3 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano leaves
- Gray salt and cracked black pepper
- 1 flank steak, about 1 pound
- 4 ounces Gorgonzola, crumbled
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 4 large slices bread, cut from a good, crusty loaf
Prepare the grill and let it burn down to medium coals. Core the tomatoes and cut an X through the skin on the bottom of each. In a bowl, toss the tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, and chiles with 1 to 2 tablespoons of the olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Secure the chilies with metal or soaked wooden skewers so they won't fall through the grill grate. Place the tomatoes on the grill, X-side down and away from direct heat, with the other vegetables. Cover the grill and cook, turning the onions, bell pepper and chiles to char evenly all over, until the tomatoes have softened but are still firm enough to stand on their own and the onions, bell pepper and chilies are blistered, about 15 minutes. Put the pepper and chiles in a bowl and cover to steam and loosen the skins. Let the tomatoes cool to room temperature.
In a large, shallow bowl, combine 4 tablespoons olive oil, garlic, vinegar, oregano. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.
Peel the grilled vegetables. Cut the tomatoes in half horizontally and squeeze out the seeds into a sieve suspended over a bowl to catch the juices. Finely chop the onions and tomatoes. Return the tomato pulp and any juices from the chopping board to the bowl holding the tomato juices. Seed and chop the chiles. Cut the bell pepper into small dice. Mash the chiles and taste to determine their heat.
Season the flank steak with salt, pepper, and brush with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Grill, turning once, until done to your taste, about 10 minutes for rare meat (to cook indoors try a cast iron, skillet or bistecca pan). A minute before removing steak from the heat, top with oregano and Gorgonzola. Transfer to a cutting board, drizzle with another 1 tablespoon olive oil, and crumble the remaining 1/2 teaspoon oregano over the top. Let rest for about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, brush the bread on both sides with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the bread on both sides until brown and crunchy on the outside but still soft within.
Carve the meat on the diagonal into thin slices and arrange on a platter or plates, on top of crusty bread. Top with about 1/4 cup of the Salsa Cruda, per slice of bread drizzled over each portion. Serve immediately.
Recipe courtesy of Michael Chiarello