Going through the freezer yesterday, I found a couple of nice little New York Strip steaks that needed to be cooked before they turned into bricks.
There was still plenty of charcoal left in the grill -- the lovely thing about a covered grill is you can "turn it off" and save unused charcoal after grilling by shutting the vents and closing the lid. I added a little more and built a tic-tac-toe grid of split pine and hardwood with crumpled newspaper in the bottom center, then piled up charcoal around it to form a chimney open at the bottom. A match at the front and another at the back for luck soon had it roaring and I fed leftover small pieces into it until I was satisfied.*
The meat had thawed overnight and was sitting out, seasoned (coarse togarishi salt, black pepper, a very little ginger and garlic) and covered, while I built the fire.
Before the meat went on, I assembled another mushroom pilaf: oyster mushrooms, chopped carrot, celery and a couple of cherry tomatoes, chopped piparra peppers and capers, seasoned with garlic, parsley, rosemary, basil and thyme. (I think I have mentioned before that Simon and Garfunkel's similar list in song lyrics is what you use to season baked chicken. Those wistful, romantic lyrics? They're thinking about dinner!) A teaspoon or two of butter and it sat on the back of the grill while the steaks cooked.
Some water-soaked hickory chips and the steak followed -- mine first (medium) and Tam's later (very rare).
While all that had been going on on, there was one more thing in the pipeline: water heating up in a big pot on the stove (and the electric teakettle, it's faster) with a dash of salt and a teaspoon or so of chorizo seasoning. Corn on the cob takes about seven minutes in boiling water, and keeps for quite a while in the hot water.
It all came together right on time and enjoyed a nice supper (hickory-grilled steak and corn on the cob is hard to beat!) while watching Turn: Washington's Spies, an espionage thriller set during the Revolutionary War (ours).
* Charcoal-lighting fluid? Just say no -- and say no to briquettes, too. Hardwood lump charcoal will make you eager to grill, and the emotional reward of starting a fire with one or two matches is a nice mood-booster.
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