Try this great recipe for Grilled Chipotle-Lime

Try this great recipe for Grilled Chipotle-Lime
KC Strip Steak – perfect for dinner by the lake!
Pete Dulin
hen summer is in full swing, I crave dishes
with simple, bold flavors that do not require
lots of preparation or cooking time. Grilling a
fine cut of KC strip steak dressed in a chipotlelime marinade is a fresh way to heighten the taste without
much fuss.
A choice cut of meat makes all the difference. Kansas City
is still known for grain-fed beef that produces fine steaks.
I head over to McGonigle’s Market where they sell aged,
hand cut, 12-ounce strip steaks that can also be ordered
online and shipped to your doorstep. Kansas City Steak
Company is another handy online source, or drop by the
meat department at an area Hen House Market. I select
a couple of KC strip steaks that are trimmed of excess
fat and have some marbling to bring out juicy flavor.
When ready to cook, I recommend savoring a cold
cervesa or mojito while preparing the chipotle-lime
marinade. It’s a perfectly reasonable way to cool off from
the summer heat and summon a feisty appetite for a
steak dish that sizzles.
Chipotle is a smoked jalapeno pepper that falls on
the lower end of the Scoville heat index used to rate the
fiery nature of chilies. I first encountered the aromatic power
of chipotles at a small farm in northern California near the
Russian River. The farmer grew jalapenos in rich soil and
steady sunshine until ripe for picking. Then, she smoked her
version of chipotle chilies in a brick oven over wood from fruit
trees to impart this woodsy, fragrant aroma wrapped around
cherry tones and mild heat.
I have been a fan of this pepper ever since. It bears the
bold flavor of smoke and complex citrus-cherry tones that
marry well with lime juice. For a local source, I prefer using
dried chipotle pepper powder available at Planter’s Seed in the
City Market. Canned chipotle pepper in adobo sauce found at
supermarkets will work too.
june/july 2008
Now We’re Cooking
In a bowl, I combine three chipotle peppers
and adobe sauce from the can with a half-cup
of fresh lime juice, two tablespoons of vegetable or olive oil, 1/4 cup of honey, one minced
clove of garlic, and 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro
(optional). The lime juice adds a tart citrus
note that offsets the sweetness of honey, tang
of onion and garlic, and smoky bite of pepper.
If using dried chipotle powder, substitute two
tablespoons of powder for canned peppers.
I coat both sides of the steaks with a liberal
dash of kosher salt and cracked black pepper.
After mixing the ingredients well, I pour the
marinade over both sides of the steaks resting
in a baking pan. Next, I cover and store the
dish in the refrigerator so it can marinade for
up to two hours, buying time to soak up sun
and relish that cervesa.
Prior to grilling, I set out the marinated
steaks for 10-15 minutes, season them again
lightly with salt and black pepper, and wait
until the meat reaches room temperature so it
will cook more evenly. Throwing a cold piece of
raw steak on the grill is prohibido because the
inner juices are concentrated in the middle of
the meat.
After preparing a hot fire in a charcoal grill,
I recommend waiting until the flames have
ceased and the coals are glowing. Or, let a gas
grill heat up adequately before placing the
meat over the flames. Sear the meat on each
side, grilling four to six minutes minimum to
seal in the juices and produce a medium rare
steak, seven minutes for medium. Cook longer
to desired doneness, if you prefer. Finish off
that beverage in the meantime.
Another tip: Use tongs to handle the strip
steak. Poking meat on the grill with a fork
allows the inner juices carrying delicious flavor
to drip away. Prohibido!
After grilling, I place the steak on a clean
platter and let it rest for 3-4 minutes before
serving and slicing. It’s hard to wait, but resting
the meat will help retain the flavorful juices.
Suggested side dishes include grilled corn on the
cob and a diced salsa with mango, cucumber,
chopped cilantro, lime juice, red onion, salt and
pepper. The salsa’s cool ingredients will offset
mild heat from the spiced-up steak and heighten
the summer vibe of the meal.
Pairing Notes
Ready to move beyond a cervesa or mojito?
Try accompanying the steak with a glass of
Crios De Susana Balbo Malbec 2006 (Argentina), a wine known for its dark fruit, forward
flavor, and full body that should hold its
own against the bold flavor of chipotle. To
play it safe, reach for a big
Cabernet Sauvignon with
enough tannin to take
on your KC strip steak.
As a more creative
alternative, youthful
Gamay Beaujolais
should have enough heft
to pair well with steak and
balance the fruit tones of the
marinade. u
1307 W. 79th St.
Kansas City, Mo.
Fax: 816-444-2474
Kansas City Steak
Planter’s Seed and
Spice Company
513 Walnut
Kansas City, Mo.
Fax: 816-842-1422