Pineapple-Marinated Flank Steak Tacos with Charred Tomato-Avocado Salsa
Recipe by Christine Byrne
This recipe works best if you marinate the steak for 4-12 hours before cooking. It only takes a minute to put together, so do it in the morning and let the marinating magic happen in the fridge all day.
8 ounces flank steak
2 tablespoons pineapple juice
juice of ½ lime
2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 medium red bell pepper, halved, cored, seeds removed
6 small corn tortillas
½ ripe avocado, chopped into rough ¼-inch cubes
lime wedges, for serving
sour cream, for serving
1. To marinate the steak: Combine flank pineapple juice, lime juice, 1 tablespoon canola oil, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and a few cracks of freshly ground pepper in a quart-sized resealable plastic bag. Seal the bag and shake so that the steak is evenly coated with marinade. Refrigerate 4 to 12 hours, flipping halfway through if you can.
2. When you're ready to cook, heat a grill so that one side is hot (450°- 475°F) and the other side is warm (325° - 375°F). On a charcoal grill: pile hot coals on just one half of the grill; On a gas grill: turn the burners to medium-high on one side and medium-low on the opposite side.
3. While the grill heats, take the steak out and let it sit at room temperature, and prepare the vegetables: Soak 2 wooden skewers in water for at least 10 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the tomatoes, bell pepper, scallions, and the remaining tablespoon of canola oil in a medium bowl, drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of canola oil, season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat. Thread the tomato halves onto the two soaked skewers.
4. When the grill is hot, lay the tomato skewers and the halved bell peppers, skin side-up, in the middle of the grill and the scallions on the warm side of the grill. Cover the grill (if you're using charcoal, open the vent so that the coals don't suffocate) and cook until the scallions are wilted, the tomatoes are soft, and the bell pepper is soft around the edges, about 4 minutes.
5. Uncover the grill, pat the marinated steak dry with a paper towel, then place the steak on the hot side of the grill. Flip the bell peppers, the tomato skewer, and the scallion and cook, uncovered, until the underside of the steak has grill marks, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the steak and cook to an internal temperature of 130°F for medium rare, 2 to 3 minutes more. (Your best bet is to use a thermometer, but you can estimate meat temperature by feel, as shown above.) By now, the scallions should be soft, the tomatoes starting to blister, and the bell pepper tender. When the steak and vegetables are cooked, take everything off the grill. Let the steak rest on a cutting board for at least 5 minutes. The internal temperature will rise to 135°F as it rests.
6. Place the corn tortillas out over the warm side of the grill and cook until heated through, about a minute per side. Take the tortillas off the grill and stack them on a plate.
7. For the tomato-avocado salsa: Pull the tomatoes off the skewer into a small mixing bowl. Cut the root ends from the scallions and throw them away, then coarsely chop the scallions and add them to the mixing bowl. Add the avocado, season with salt and pepper and toss everything together. Set aside.
8. Serve the steak and peppers with the tortillas, tomato-avocado salsa, sour cream, and lime wedges.