Entertaining the Question
September, 2005 - Issue #11
Dear Grilling Goddesses,

I know that fall's right around the corner, but I'm not quite ready to retire the old barbeque. Help me go out with a bang!

To end summer in style, you first need to know the difference between grilling and barbecuing.

The high heat associated with grilling chars the surface of the food, sealing in juices and creating the smoky, caramelized crust that is so yummy. Grilling is best suited to thin or small, tender cuts of meat or other foods, like kebabs, burgers, steaks, chops, chicken and fish fillets. Grilled vegetables are also a staple on our catering menu, and lately we have been grilling bread and fruits for a new twist.

Barbecuing is a long, slow, indirect low-heat method that uses charcoal or wood chunks to smoke-cook the food. This is ideally suited to large pieces of meat, like whole pigs and turkeys, as well as spareribs. It was designed to turn inexpensive cuts of meats into meat falling off the bone!

Now, let's get started! Forget the bottled BBQ sauce, Santa Clarita. Here are some of our suggestions so you can "conquer the 'cue."

Cuban-style Steak with Mojo
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp ground pepper
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
1/2cup olive oil
1-1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cumin
1/3 cup water
8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced crosswise
6 - 8oz thin sirloin steaks (we use skirt steak)
3 tbsp chopped cilantro

Mix the lime juice, water, orange juice, salt, oregano and pepper in a bowl. Heat the olive oil in deep saucepan over moderate heat. Add the garlic and cumin; cook until garlic is fragrant and golden about 2 minutes. Very carefully add the juice mixture and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and let the mojo cool to room temperature.

Arrange the steaks in glass baking dish. Add the cilantro to the mojo and pour half of it over the steaks, turn to coat evenly. Cover and marinate in refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours. Reserve remaining mojo. Light that grill, take the heat to high, grill the meat 2 minutes per side for medium rare. Transfer meat to a platter, spoon the remaining mojo on top and serve.

Tuna Steak Sandwich Spread

Grill tuna steaks marinated in soy sauce and sake. Put into a bun, and serve with this incredible spread for something different.

Ginger-Lemon Mayonnaise
1 cup mayo
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
2 tbsp finely chopped scallion greens
1 tbsp black sesame seeds
2 tsp finely grated fresh ginger
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
Freshly ground pepper

In a bowl, combine all the ingredients.


Cindy and Tamra, owners of RSVP Catering, never burn their buns.
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