flank steak lettuce wraps

flank steak lettuce wrap with two salsas

Tonight’s menu was supposed to feature Horseradish Crusted Beef Tenderloin from the Light and Healthy cookbook by America’s Test Kitchen. Unfortunately, after visiting two supermarkets, I could not find beef tenderloin. So I went for another Test Kitchen recipe instead, Steak Tacos. I made one low-carb adjustment to it and that was I served it with iceberg lettuce instead of tortillas, and I served the steak “wraps” with two kinds of salsa, one spicy and one not. I grilled the steak two strips at a time in the Foreman Grill for just 3 minutes to get them at medium; they turned out quite tender and juicy. For salsa accompaniments I recommend the pineapple-green apple salsa and an avocado-tomato salsa. Either one (or both) can be spicy.

Herb Paste
1/2    cup packed fresh cilantro leaves
3    medium garlic cloves , roughly chopped
3    medium scallions , roughly chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1    medium jalapeño chile , stemmed, seeded, and roughly chopped (keep the seeds if more heat is desired)
1/2    teaspoon ground cumin
1/4    cup vegetable oil

1    tablespoon fresh lime juice
1    flank steak (1 1/2 to 1 3/4 pounds), trimmed of excess fat and cut lengthwise (with grain) into 4 equal pieces (see note)

Note: Cut the steak in half lengthwise with the grain. Then cut each half again lengthwise following the grain.

1    tablespoon kosher salt or 1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
1/2    teaspoon sugar
1/2    teaspoon ground black pepper
2    tablespoons vegetable oil

Tacos (serve with lettuce or with the following)
12    (6-inch) corn tortillas , warmed
Fresh cilantro leaves
Minced white or red onion
Lime wedges

1. FOR THE HERB PASTE: Pulse cilantro, garlic, scallions, jalapeño, and cumin in food processor until finely chopped, ten to twelve 1-second pulses, scraping down sides as necessary. Add oil and process until mixture is smooth and resembles pesto, about 15 seconds, scraping down sides of workbowl as necessary. Transfer 2 tablespoons herb paste to medium bowl; whisk in lime juice and set aside.
2. FOR THE STEAK: Using dinner fork, poke each piece of steak 10 to 12 times on each side. Place in large baking dish; rub all sides of steak pieces evenly with salt and then coat with remaining herb paste. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 30 minutes or up to 1 hour.
3. Scrape herb paste off steak and sprinkle all sides of pieces evenly with sugar and pepper. Heat oil in 12-inch heavy- bottomed nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until smoking. Place steak in skillet and cook until well browned, about 3 minutes. Flip steak and sear until second side is well browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Using tongs, stand each piece on a cut side and cook, turning as necessary, until all cut sides are well browned and internal temperature registers 125 to 130 degrees on an instant-read thermometer, 2 to 7 minutes. Transfer steak to cutting board and let rest 5 minutes.
4. FOR THE TACOS: Using sharp chef’s knife or carving knife, slice steak pieces across grain into 1/8-inch-thick pieces. Transfer sliced steak to bowl with herb paste-lime juice mixture and toss to coat. Season with salt. Spoon small amount of sliced steak into center of each warm tortilla and serve immediately, passing toppings separately.