coffee cocoa rub flank steak

I never bought flank steak or even though about it until about a year ago after being served a savory, succulent one at my sister’s house.    Not only does it cook quickly which makes it ideal for groups of all sizes, it has a wonderful flavor and is easy to find in most markets. 

You can grill flank steak with just a little garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper but this rub is so good, it is worth a few more steps.  The heat level may be adapted (meaning the spiciness of cayenne pepper and chili powder) according to who is coming for dinner and your personal preference.

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1 pound flank steak

1/2 cup finely ground dark roast coffee

1 tablespoons dark cocoa ( I like Valrhona 100% cocoa)

¼ teaspoon chili powder

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/4 teaspoon paprika

1/4 teaspoon sugar

olive oil to rub on meat

You often see the term barbecue and grill used interchangeably.  But people who delve deep into the world of barbecuing get highly offended with this common mistake.  Barbecuing is a slow process, taking several hours, with roots in Afro-Caribbean culture.  Think of a whole pig over a spit.  Whereas grilling is merely cooking something relatively quickly over a hot flame, like when you cook a hamburger.

time.  10 minutes for rub.  30 minutes rest.  8 minutes cooking. 

level.  easy

serves.    makes enough rub for two pounds of flank steak.

1.  Dump all the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix well.


2.  Rub the flank steak with a little olive oil on both sides, and season well with salt.

3.  Massage all the ingredients into the steak on both sides.  The steak should be completely coated. You can let all the ingredients 'soak' in for 30 minutes or up to a few hours but it is not necessary.  You can save extra rub.*

4.  Heat barbecue grill.  If not using a barbecue grill, take a medium size grill pan (Le Creuset makes a good one)  on the stove top with high heat.  Let it become nice and hot- the steak should sizzle when placed on it.

5.  Shake off a bit of the rub-just the larger grinds of coffee.

6.  Place steak onto the hot grill and cook about 3-4 minutes on each side. 

7. Take off grill or pan and let rest on chopping board under aluminum foil for 10 minutes.

8.  Cut into thin slices and serve.


To finish off

Nothing goes better with any grilled meat than a generous serving of homemade mashed potatoes.  For a vegetable try broccoli or green beans with a simple salad.

* Place extra rub in an airtight container and store in cupboard.  Can be saved for up to two months.