I think I should have titled this post, Me and the Ranger… Kitchen calamities! It’s been quite the evening here at the Bennett Camp. I had the brilliant idea of preparing a fun and delicious dinner of quick grilled spice rubbed flank steak tacos, with fresh organic avocado slices, Ranchero or Monterrey Jack cheese, and our favorite Tio’s Salsa, all stuffed in warm and salty corn tortillas. Sounds lovely doesn’t it?
It began smoothly enough. While I pounded out and seasoned the beef, Ranger Craig started the grill. Then I decided I’d quickly warm the tortillas in the oven rather than pan fry them, you know, to save a little time.
Feeling oh so productive and on task to get dinner served before the troops arrived, I looked out my kitchen window only to see plumes of smoke howling from my grill. I vaguely remember Ranger Craig walking out of the kitchen and saying “don’t forget to watch the grill”. Hmmm…. was he talking to me?
My grill is toast. Nothing would put out the fire, so I had to use the fire extinguisher.
While I was putting out the fire on the deck, more smoke started pouring out of my kitchen. Yes, you got it, I left the tortillas in the oven under the broiler. Ok, so clearly this was not my night to cook. And I call myself a chef?
Forever the optimist… dinner could be saved. I’d just pan grill the beef on the stovetop and start over with new tortillas. Ok, back on track again.
Not so fast Missy! I forgot I’d chipotle chili powdered the beef and while grilling on the grill pan my eyes and throat started to burn. So I opened a few windows. Didn’t help.
Now everyone was running through the house opening windows, plugging in the summer fans that we’re anticipating using one day soon, and asking me what I’m doing in the kitchen! I have no idea what I’m doing in the kitchen tonight. Somebody pour me a tall one and sit me down!
Believe it or not, dinner wasn’t a disaster. The flank steak turned out delicious and the tacos were a success. The Bennett Crew was delightfully happy, and delightfully happy that Mom didn’t burn down the house or cause serious harm to our eyes.
This is exactly why sandwich night was invented.
For the rub
1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon garlic salt
½ teaspoon onion salt
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
2-3 lbs flank or skirt steak, pounded thin
Corn tortillas 12
Ranchero cheese, crumbled or shredded (substitute with Monterrey Jack)
Pre-heat the grill to 400F.
Mix together the chili powder, coriander, oregano, cumin, garlic salt, onion salt, smoked paprika, salt and pepper.
Brush the flank steak with oil and then rub with the seasoning mixture on both sides. If the steak is large, cut it into 2 or 3 manageable pieces. This will make it easier to handle on the grill.
Place the steak pieces on the grill and let each side cook for about 3-4 minutes depending on how you like your steak cooked. The ends will typically cook faster and the center will be a bit on the rare side.
Once the steaks are cooked to your desired doneness, transfer them to a cutting board and let them rest.
While the steaks are resting warm the corn tortillas in the oven.
Turn your oven on broil and place the tortillas on a baking sheet. Brush each side of the tortillas with oil and then place in the oven. Watch the oven closely as the tortillas can burn easily.
Let the tortillas broil for a minute or two and then turn each tortilla and broil the other side for another minute or two.
Transfer warmed tortillas to a plate and cover with a towel to keep warm.
Slice the beef very thin and against the grain. This will give tender pieces of meat to fill your tacos.
Place the meat on a platter and serve with the warm tortillas, avocado slices, cheese, lime wedges and salsa. Enjoy!