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Show 402:
The New Face of Beef

Here’s a show for beef lovers featuring fantastic cuts of beef, new to most grillmeisters. Leading off is a clod (whole smoked beef shoulder), much beloved in central Texas and virtually unknown everywhere else on the planet. It's 18 pounds of pure beef pleasure cooked low and slow to fork-tender perfection. Then, meet the new steak on the block — flame-seared flat iron, which Steven prepares in the south of the border style with chilies and mucha cerveza.

TEXAS CLOD
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BBQ USA  
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Source: BBQ USA by Steven Raichlen (Workman Publishing, 2003)
Method: Indirect
Yield: Serves 25 to 30

3/4 cup salt
1/4 cup cracked black peppercorns
2 to 3 tablespoons cayenne pepper
1 beef clod (13 to 15 pounds)
Kreuz's Sides (see below)

You'll also need:
15 cups wood chips or chunks (preferably oak), soaked for 1 hour in water to cover,
     then drained

1. Place the salt, peppercorns, and cayenne in a small bowl and stir to mix. (Actually, your fingers work better for mixing the rub than a spoon or whisk does.)

2. Generously sprinkle the rub over all sides of the clod, patting it onto the meat with your fingertips.

3. Set up the grill for indirect grilling and preheat to medium-low. If using a gas grill, place 4 cups of the wood chips or chunks in the smoker box or in a smoker pouch and run the grill on high until you see smoke, then reduce the heat to medium-low. If using a charcoal grill, place a large drip pan in the center, preheat the grill to medium-low, then toss 1-1/2 cups of the wood chips or chunks on the coals.

4. When ready to cook, place the clod, fat side up, in the center of the hot grate, over the drip pan and away from the heat. Cover the grill and cook the clod until darkly browned and cooked through, 8 to 9 hours. To test for doneness, use an instant-read meat thermometer: The internal temperature should be between 190 and 195 degrees F. for well-done, which is the way clod is usually served. If the outside starts to burn, cover it loosely with aluminum foil. If using a gas grill, every 2 hours you'll need to add 4 cups of wood chips or chunks. If using a charcoal grill, every hour you'll need to add 12 fresh coals and 3/4 cup of wood chips or chunks to each side.

5. Transfer the grilled clod to a cutting board and let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes, then thinly slice it across the grain with a sharp knife.

VARIATION: You can also grill a boneless rib roast this way. Use about 2 to 3 tablespoons of the rub to season a 4- to 5-pound one. It will take 1-1/2 to 2 hours for it to cook using the indirect method. The rub you have left over will keep for at least 6 months stored in an airtight container away from heat and light.


Now About Those Sides

Over the years, a series of accompaniments have come to be associated with Kreuz Market in Lockhart, Texas. If you want to be completely legitimate when preparing Texas Clod, just arrange everything that follows in bowls or on trays and serve them along with the beef:

Puffy white bread (such as ButterKrust)
Saltine crackers
Sour pickles
Sweet pickles
Pickled jalapenos
Thick slices of white onion
Slices of peeled avocado
Slices of tomato
Thin (1/4 inch) slabs of orange Wisconsin cheddar cheese or jalapeno Jack cheese

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TEX-MEX FLATIRON STEAKS
Con Mucha Cerveza

printer-ready version

BBQ USA  
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Source: BBQ USA by Steven Raichlen (Workman Publishing, 2003)
Method: Direct
Yield: Serves 4
Advance Preparation: 2 hours for marinating the steaks

FOR THE STEAKS:
2  flatiron or skirt steaks (about 2 to 2-1/2 pounds, each about 3/8- to 3/4-inch thick)
Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil

FOR THE MUCHA CERVEZA MARINADE:
1 bottle (8 ounces) dark Mexican beer
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 to 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and finely chopped (for hotter steaks, leave
     the seeds in)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

FOR SERVING:
2 bunches scallions, trimmed
4 to 8 jalapeño peppers
4 flour tortillas
Lime wedges
Your favorite salsa in an attractive bowl

You'll also need:
2 cups wood chips or chunks (preferably mesquite or oak), soaked for 1 hour in water to
     cover, then drained

1. Generously season the steaks on both sides with salt and black pepper. Place the steaks in a nonreactive baking dish just large enough to hold them and drizzle the olive oil over them. Turn the steaks a couple of times, rubbing them with your fingertips to coat with oil

2. MAKE THE MUCHA CERVEZA MARINADE: Combine the beer, lime juice, onion, garlic, chopped jalapeno(s), and cilantro in a nonreactive mixing bowl and stir to mix. Pour the marinade over the steaks and let them marinate in the refrigerator, covered, for 1 to 2 hours, turning them a couple of times so that they marinate evenly.

3. Set up the grill for direct grilling and preheat to high. If using a gas grill, place all of the wood chips or chunks in the smoker box or in a smoker pouch and run the grill on high until you see smoke. If using a charcoal grill, preheat it to high, then toss 1 cup of the wood chips or chunks on the coals.

4. When ready to cook, brush and oil the grill grate. Place the scallions and whole jalapenos on the hot grate and grill until nicely browned on all sides. This will take 2 to 3 minutes per side (6 to 9 minutes in all) for the jalapenos and 3 to 4 minutes per side (6 to 8 minutes in all) for the scallions. Transfer the grilled vegetables to a plate.

5. Remove the steaks from the marinade and drain, discarding the marinade. If using a charcoal grill, toss the remaining 1 cup of wood chips or chunks on the coals. Place the marinated steaks on the hot grate and grill until cooked to taste, 4 to 6 minutes per side for medium-rare, rotating each steak a quarter turn after 2 minutes on each side to create an attractive crosshatch of grill marks. Season the steaks on both sides with salt and pepper. To test for doneness, use the poke method: the meat should be gently yielding. Transfer the grilled steaks to plates or a platter and let rest for 3 minutes.

6. Warm the tortillas on the grill, about 15 seconds per side, and transfer them to a cloth-lined basket. Serve the steaks with the grilled jalapenos, scallions, and tortillas and salsa on the side. To eat, wrap bite-size pieces of steak in a tortilla with some of the scallions, jalapenos, and salsa.


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