Gran's Flank Steak and Pan-Roasted Okra, Corn and Tomatoes
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup Kentucky bourbon or Tennessee whiskey
- 1 3/4 lbs beef flank steak
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tablespoon cane syrup or honey
- 1 Tablespoon sherry vinegar, white wine vinegar or red wine vinegar
- 3 Tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more for brushing
- 8 oz. fresh okra, halved lengthwise
- Kosher salt
- 1-1/2 cups corn kernels (from 2 large ears)
- 2 lb. fresh tomatoes
- 2 oz. slab bacon, cut into large dice
- 1 medium white onion, chopped (3/4 cup)
- 1 large garlic clove, mashed to a paste
- 1 to 2 teaspoons vinegar, either red wine, white wine, or distilled white (optional)
- Freshly ground black pepper
Directions for the Steak:
- Pour the soy sauce, bourbon and 1/2 cup water into a broiler pan. Lay the steak in the pan and flip it a few times to agitate and mix the marinade and to coat the steak in the liquid. Let stand, covered, for 1 hour, turning it once at the half-hour mark.
- Remove the steak from the marinade, pat it dry with two changes of paper towels, and then season it with the salt and black pepper. Reserve 1/2 cup of the marinade.
- Turn the broiler on and position the broiler pan 4 inches beneath the heat source. Wait until a drop of water dropped into the pan sizzles, and then add the steak. Cook for 3 minutes on the first side. Then flip it and cook for 2 minutes on the second side for rare, 3 minutes for medium-rare. Transfer the steak to a cutting board, tent it with foil and let it rest for 10 minutes.
- While the steak rests, pour the reserved marinade into the broiler pan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Simmer until reduced by half, about 6 minutes. Add the cane syrup and vinegar, and cook for 1 minute until warmed through.
- Slice the flank steak as thin as you can across the grain, and serve with the sauce.
Directions for the Pan-Roasted Okra, Corn and Tomatoes:
- Heat a large cast-iron skillet over high heat until very hot and brush lightly with vegetable oil. In a bowl, toss the okra with 1 Tbs. of the oil and season with 1/4 tsp. salt. Cook the okra in the pan in two batches, turning once, until charred and tender, 3 to 4 minutes per batch depending on the size and freshness of your okra. Reserve in a bowl so you can reuse the cast-iron skillet.
- Add 1 Tbs. of the oil to the corn and season with 1/4 tsp. of the salt. Add the corn to the skillet and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly charred in spots, about 3 minutes. Reserve the corn in a bowl, separate from the okra.
- Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil and fill a bowl with ice water. Score the tomato bottoms with an X. Add the tomatoes to the boiling water and blanch for 10 seconds to loosen their skins. Transfer the tomatoes to the ice water to cool. Core and peel the tomatoes, and halve them crosswise. Working over a sieve set in a bowl, tease out the seeds with your fingers. Press on the seeds to extract the juice, then discard them. Chop the tomatoes and reserve them in the bowl of their juice.
- Pour the remaining tablespoon oil into the skillet over medium-high heat, and when it shimmers, add the bacon. Sauté the bacon until it just begins to brown, about 4 minutes, then add the onion and 1/2 tsp. salt. Stir continuously for about 2 minutes, allowing the onion to release some moisture, but not letting it brown. Add the garlic and cook for about a minute to let its flavor bloom (do not brown the garlic). Then add the tomatoes, and stir to combine. Cover the pot, reduce the heat to medium, and cook for about 4 minutes until the tomatoes have mostly collapsed.
- Add the corn, stir to combine, and cook for 3 more minutes. Add the okra, stir, and cook just until the okra is heated through, about 2 minutes. Season to taste with the vinegar (which you may or may not need, depending upon the acidity of the tomatoes), salt, and black pepper; serve.
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