Molasses Glazed Beef kebabs with Black eyed Pea Salad
Why this recipe works: The sweetness of the orange juice, combined with the slightly bitter, smoky edge of molasses and the subtle hint of heat from the jalapeño, gives these beef kebabs a big boost of flavor and adds complexity and intrigue. Steak tips, a.k.a. flap meat, are sold as whole steaks, cubes, and strips. To ensure equally sized chunks that will cook evenly, we prefer to purchase a whole steak and cut it our selves. If whole steaks are not available, our second choice is to cut the tips from strips. The bottom line? Precut steaks tips should be avoided. For maximum caramelization of the glaze, we cut the beef into large 2 inch pieces. This ensures that the meat won’t overcook in the time it takes to brown and caramaelize the exterior. We increased the amount of steak from our usual 1 ½ pounds (for four people) to 2 pounds, who what our kebabs have 4 to 5 pieces of meat per skewer. Fresh squeezed or bottled orange juice can be used in this recipe.
1 cup orange juice
½ cup, plus 1 teaspoon unsulfured molasses
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 jalapeño chile, seeded and minced
3 garlic cloves
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 (15.5 ounce) cans black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced salt and pepper
2 pounds steak tips, cut into 2 inch chunks
- In medium saucepan, bring orange juice to boil over high heat and reduce to 1/3 cup, about 3 minutes. Stir in ½ cup molasses and continue to boil until mixture reduces to ½ cup.
- Meanwhile, whisk lime juice, remaining 1 teaspoon molasses, jalapeño, 1 clove garlic, cilantro, and olive oil in medium bowl. Toss in peas and bell pepper. Season with salt and pepper
- Whisk molasses mixture with remaining 2 cloves garlic, ¾ teaspoon pepper, and ½ teaspoon salt in small bowl. Toss beef with molasses mixture. Thread meat evenly onto four 12 – inch metal skewers. Grill kebabs over hot fire, covered, and turn frequently until meat is well browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Serve with black eyed pea salad.
If you’re cooking over very high heat, bamboo skewers will burn and break apart – no matter how long you soak them in water beforehand. We had better luck with metal skewers. They may cost more, but they’re reusable and they can handle the heartiest kebabs without bending or breaking. Not all metal skewers are created equal, however. We had a tough time flipping food on round skewers – the skewer itself turned just fine, but the food stayed in place. Double – pronged skewers turned the food, but some were flimsy and most had a tendency to twist out of their parallel configuration. Other models were to sturdy, with bulky skewers that mangled the meat. Flat skewers proven much more effective, and although any flat skewer will do, we found one set we particularly liked for its price and thickness: Norpro’s 12 inch Stainless Steel Skewer