13 June 2010

Summer grillin'

I'm in Texas, it's summer, and that means it's grillin' time.  Grab a cold brewski, fire up the barbee and get ready!  A few days ago we went for dinner at LT and Jen's (friends of Mum and Larry's) and had the most AMAZING BBQed steak and chicken.  I enquired as to the secret in the sauce, so to speak, and discovered the following tricks to perfect-tasting grilled steak and chicken (they used tenderloins)...

Steak - buy fillet steak and ask the butcher (that's right, go to the butcher so you can specify which piece you want) for the middle of the fillet, rather than the end pieces.  Fillet is the most expensive cut, but if you're going to be eating it without sauces etc, you want it to be tender, it should cut like butter when cooked.  Obviously most of us can't necessarily afford to buy solely fillet to satisfy our red-meat needs, but use cheaper cuts for stir-frys, curries, stews or steaks being served with a sauce. 

Chicken - Jen's chicken tenderloins were incredible.  They were marinated, then BBQed, that's all.  So the secret was in the marinade.  What was in it...?  Italian salad dressing.  That simple.  Seriously, I was blown away - who'd have thought italian salad dressing would be so flavoursome as a marinade?  She said she chucked the tenderloins in with the dressing about 4 hours before they were cooked, but as with most marinades that's a movable feast - 12 hours, a half hour...  Try it 'cause I swear you'll not find any other marinade for chicken that works so well which is this easy.  Ever. 

Serve these beasts with salad (green, potato, coleslaw, all of the above!!), or with mashed potatoes and BBQed veges - asparagus, mushrooms, zucchini and broccoli all do well on the barbee.  The polenta strips from polenta - provola!! would be good here too - just BBQ them instead of baking or frying them.  Watch this space for more grillin' tips - I'm sure to come across some more as I traipse about Texas and Louisiana over the next month! 

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