Joni Woolf: Now, let us talk about beef

Published 5:00 pm Monday, October 10, 2016

Each New Year’s Day, my brother and sister-in-law, Elizabeth, host brunch at their home in Savannah. It’s always lovely, with a broad array of fine foods, including the traditional greens and black-eyed peas, marinated shrimp, homemade biscuits, and several desserts (many of which come from here, via my mother’s kitchen!). One of my favorite dishes, and a recipe I’ve brought home and used repeatedly, is Elizabeth’s grilled London broil. London broil is a relatively inexpensive cut of beef, and when marinated and cooked properly, can be surprisingly tender and delicious. It can also be recycled! At least once or twice a month, I prepare Elizabeth’s recipe, then use the leftovers within the next day or two for an authentic Mexican dinner, seasoning the steak for tacos served with cilantro, onions, lime, and Valentino hot sauce. Here are two recipes, then, for a $10-$12 cut of beef:
Grilled London Broil
1.5-2- lb. London broil
Marinate in gallon plastic freezer bag:
½ cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons fresh ginger root, grated
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
¼ hot pepper flakes
½ cup bourbon

Marinate overnight. Grill, 6-8 minutes on each side, for a rare middle and medium ends, longer for a steak that is more done. Save marinade for sauce, boiling to kill any bacteria from the raw meat, then adding ¼ cup cream and 2 tablespoons horseradish (more for more flavor) for dipping sauce. Another option for sauce that is easy and good — mix ½ cup Duke’s mayonnaise with 2-4 tablespoons horseradish. This sauce can be used for leftover steak sandwiches, if that’s preferable to the Mexican recipe that follows:

Steak Tacos
Leftover London broil, sliced thin
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt/pepper to taste
Optional: packaged taco seasoning

Heat the above ingredients over low heat, adding water if necessary, until meat is warm and tender, 30 minutes or so.
Serve steak in warm CORN tortillas (flour if you must, but corn is so much better!). Two corn tortillas hold together better than one. Top with chopped onions, fresh cilantro, lime juice, and Valentino hot sauce. That’s right; no cheese, no sour cream. Fresh, healthy, authentic tacos. This is how they are served at La Pasada, on Tripp Street in Americus, and although I haven’t mastered their recipe, this one gets close. Enjoy!

Carey Wooten, daughter of Joni Woolf, writes this week while her mother travels.