Well, here we are. The unofficial end of the summer.
Cue the snow and Seasonal Affective Disorder.
Maybe not quite. But as much as I love and appreciate the crisp air, brilliant trees, and comforting foods of fall, summer will always be my favorite season. And it consistently intrigues me that even though I've been out of school for a few years, I can't help but feel as though summer ends on August 31.
I gotta say, it's been a great one. It's been our first full summer living in our new house, and our first official summer as a married couple. We've traveled, spent time with friends and family, hosted a few parties, relaxed on the beach, enjoyed wine on our front porch, learned a lot about gardening, and used our grill to its full potential. (Oh, and I started a little blog.) Who could ask for more?
This weekend, we hosted some family for a small Labor Day get-together, and I was relishing the opportunity to use the grill, savor classic end-of-summer foods, and squeeze every remaining ounce out of my favorite season while it lasts. The menu included Stacey's sicilian caponata with grilled bread (sweet and savory at the same time, just perfect), roasted red potatoes with olive oil and herbs, and marinated steak kabobs with garden vegetables. Followed up with Anne Burrell's lemon semifreddo with toasted almonds, lovingly prepared by Aunt Ann. It was a feast!
Back-up, marinated steak kabobs and garden veggies? Oh yes.
This marinade came my way courtesy of Kate, a new friend I happened to make during our travels this summer, which she used to marinade flank steak for delicious steak and fish tacos. It was unbelievable, and thankfully she was willing to share because I
Now, as the weekend dies down, maybe this will be the summer that my mind stretches to September 22. Or not, and next week you'll see recipes for butternut squash and pumpkin pie. Either way, somehow I'm confident that when I'm thawing out my toes this winter, this summer's memories will keep my heart warm. Enjoy!
Marinated Steak and Vegetable Kabobs
Yields 8 servings
1 jalapeno pepper, sliced in half and seeded
3 garlic cloves
Extra virgin olive oil
1/2 c roasted red peppers, roughly chopped
1 small bunch cilantro
Juice of 2-3 limes
1 1/2 - 2 lbs flank steak
2 red bell peppers
2 yellow bell peppers
1 large red onion
1 - 2 large zucchinis
Preheat broiler to high. Place the jalapeno pepper halves on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil, and broil until the skins are charred black, about 7-10 minutes. Remove the peppers from the oven and immediately seal them within a zip-top or paper bag. Let the peppers steam for approximately 10 minutes, and then remove and discard the skins.
Meanwhile, add the garlic cloves to a small skillet, along with enough of the olive oil to submerge the cloves half way. Fry the garlic over medium-high heat, until they are golden in color. Turn off the heat and remove the garlic, making sure to keep the garlic-infused oil!
In a food processor, combine the roasted jalapeno pepper, fried garlic cloves, roasted red pepper, cilantro, lime juice, and salt/pepper. Pulse the mixture until chopped fine. Gradually add some of the garlic oil to the mixture, and continue to process until smooth.
Slice the flank steak into large cubes, and add them to a zip-top storage bag. Pour in the marinade and seal, making sure all of the steak is coated. Marinade at least 4 hrs, up to 48 hrs. The longer it sits the better it is!
Cut the red and yellow bell peppers, onion, and zucchini into similar size cuts as the steak, and add to a large mixing bowl. Drizzle the mixture with olive oil and sprinkle with salt/pepper. Toss to combine. Meanwhile, if using wooden kabob skewers, soak them in water for at least 1/2 hr prior to cooking. This will prevent the wood from burning on the grill.
|Summer 2012...I got my eyes on you.|