Wednesday, March 18, 2009

WDW - Marinated Tri Tip

beef 2
Tri Tip. Everyone loves it.... few can cook it just right. I used to be one of those who would throw it on the grill, and the result would be beef jerky on the outside and tartare on the inside. Not too terribly appetizing when it looks charry-black and then when you cut it open it's a big blob of red flesh. These discouraging results caused an intimidation deep within me which eventually resulted in me giving up trying to make it entirely.

Then came along Dave Hoffman. We were over having dinner with him, his wife Erin, and their bazillion charming kids one evening and I watched firsthand how the man made a tri tip. His tri tip was tender and juicy and was cooked perfectly medium rare - I vowed right on the spot to learn from this master of meat. I let go of all memory of the tri tips I had burned made in the past and started fresh that day. It was truly life-changing.

The first thing Dave taught me was to never try to cook a tri tip whole. Yes, he puts it on the grill whole to begin with, but only for a quick sear and browning on both sides. He then removes the meat from the grill and he cuts it into steaks. He then cooks the steaks on the cut sides until done. Brilliant! The meat gets done quicker and does not get dried out. Something to do with "surface to volume ratio" which Rich has been trying to help me understand for many years. Secondly, it really helps to tenderize your meat before cooking. Dave sprinkles on Accent (msg), which I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole really prefer to use. So, I opt for the marinade route for the tenderization process.

Some of you may rely on bottled marinades like Lawry's. I want to let you know you that you can put those down...and just walk away slowly. Wait until you try this recipe for teriyaki - you will never turn to that $4 bottle of runny stuff ever again. I got this wonderful teriyaki marinade recipe from a Hawaiian friend about 20 years ago. He gave me the teriyaki recipe, and his wife, who is Chinese, gave me her recipe for Chinese Chicken Salad Dressing. Yeah, I scored. I think these were like top secret family recipes or something. I only have a vague recollection of being sworn into secrecy, so I think it's OK to put them out there into the blogosphere (the Chinese Chicken Salad Dressing recipe will be a future WDW).

Another way to deal with tri tip is to cube it up for shish kebabs. The results on the shish kebab are phenomenal because each piece gets marinated instead of just the outer layer of the tri tip. You get more flavor but it is a lot more work to cube them all up. If you feel like cutting the roast into steaks and marinating them that way, you can do that, too. Today I just went for the whole roast, since I had to trim my roses for several hours. The last thing my thorn-abused hands wanted to do was cut meat up into little pieces. If you are doing the shish kebabs, it is nice to slide some sweet yellow onion pieces on there with the meat. Today I shish-kebabed some fresh pineapple, which I put on the same time I put the meat on. They made a mighty fine accompaniment (I also served Jasmine rice and salad). By the way, pineapple is also good grilled and then nutella drizzled on!

meat 1
Brown the tri tip on both sides. I cook on high with the lid closed for 5-7 minutes per side.
beef 2
Cut it against the grain into about 1 1/2" steaks
meat 3
Place the steaks cut side down back on the grill
meat 4
Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side for medium rare, a little longer for medium or well done.
Again, the grill is on high with the lid closed.

So here's the basic recipe for the teriyaki. I usually don't put the green onions in but the fresh garlic is a must. Sometimes I add a little ginger powder or red pepper flakes. A tip for marinating your meat - use a ziploc bag instead of a bowl or dish. It keeps the marinade in better contact with the meat, and all you need to do is turn the bag over every so often while marinating. And, no dish to wash (you know how lazy I am I like to save water.) This marinade is actually great for any cut of beef and fantastic on chicken too. Enjoy!

Ryne's Teriyaki Marinade

2 cups soy sauce
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 Tbsp. pepper
6-8 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. sesame oil
1 bunch green onions, chopped (optional)

Combine all ingredients and whisk together well to dissolve sugar. Marinate meat or chicken for 4-6 hours. Makes enough for about 3-4 lbs. meat.

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Suzanne DeShong said...

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this marinade people!!! Lucky for me, I am Karen's sis, so I have acquired these recipes long ago before time began. But I can't recommend this more highly. I use it all the time, especially for beef. So easy. I have also used this for chicken breasts as well, and also pork. This way, you can always have marinade if there isn't a bottle in the fridge (which I never buy anyways!)

~Susan~ said...

This sounds absolutely delicious! I will so be trying this marinade recipe and showing my hubby the BBQ tip...Thanks :-)