06 Jun 2011 Flank Steak Pinwheels

As I mentioned in my previous note, I’ve had a rough few months, so last Friday I invited my girlfriends over for a BBQ.  This much I know is true: nothing heals and rejuvenates more than a gathering of kind, funny, independent women.  And when you put kind, funny, independent women in a room with good food, some of it experimental, a bottle of wine, and five desserts…WOW!!!  We didn’t get up from the dinner table until 12:12 AM Saturday morning!!! I feel MUCH better!

One of the experimental foods I tried was the Grilled and Stuffed Flank Steak from the Summer 2011 edition of Cook’s Illustrated “Summer Grilling” magazine (page 15).  Truth be told, the recipe was a bit of a hassle.  The flank steak had to be butterflied, then it had to be stuffed, then tied with string, then sliced, then skewered.  But, the recipe worked and it wasn’t hard.  I had fun making this, and the results were very pretty!  Perfect for a girlie BBQ!

I am going to make these again.  I like special, fun, and pretty, and I don’t mind a bit of a hassle to get that.

Flank Steak Pinwheels

You’ll need some metal skewers and some kitchen string to assemble the pinwheels.  The pinwheels are meant to be grilled on either a charcoal BBQ or a gas grill.

  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh sage
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 flank steak, 2 – 2 1/2 lbs.
  • 4 oz. thinly sliced prosciutto
  • 4 oz. thinly sliced provolone cheese
  1. Freeze the flank steak for 30 minutes (slightly frozen flank steak is easier to butterfly).  Meanwhile, chop ingredients, assemble the stuffing in step 2, unwrap the prosciutto and cheese, and find the skewers, the kitchen string, and a ruler.
  2. Combine the garlic, shallot, parsley, sage and olive oil in a small bowl.
  3. Lay the partially frozen flank steak on a large cutting board, with the grain of the meat running parallel to the counter edge.  With a sharp knife, butterfly the flank steak, leaving 1/2 inch of uncut meat along the top edge of the meat.
  4. Open the meat and lay flat.  It will probably look like a raggy rectangle.  Cover the top of the meat with plastic wrap and then pound the meat with a meat mallet or small pan until the meat is a uniform thickness and the steak is roughly in the shape of a rectangle.
  5. Spread the herb mixture from step 2 over the flank steak.
  6. Lay the prosciutto evenly over the steak, leaving a 2 inch border along the top edge.  Layer the cheese over the prosciutto, again, leaving a 2 inch border along the top edge.
  7. Starting from the bottom edge of the pounded and garnished flank steak, and rolling away from you, roll the flank steak into a tight log and place seam side down on the cutting board.
  8. Now use your kitchen string and tie the rolled flank steak at one inch intervals. (Hint:  Use a ruler to measure the intervals.  You don’t want the string any more or any less than 1 inch apart).
  9. Now skewer the rolled flank steak near each string.  Depending on the size of your flank steak, you should  have about 8 pieces of string, so you will probably need 8 skewers and get 8 pinwheels to grill.
  10. Now slice the rolled and stuffed flank steak at one inch (or slightly smaller) intervals.  Be sure each slice–each pinwheel–is held together with a piece of string and a skewer.
  11. Grill the pinwheels until the center of the pinwheel registers 125 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.  This should take approx 6 minutes of grilling time on the first side, and 5 minutes of grilling time on the second side–but of course this has a lot to do with the heat of your fire.
  12. Remove cooked pinwheels from the grill, tent loosely with foil, and let rest for 5 minutes.
  13. Remove skewers and string from pinwheels, and serve!

I served the flank steak pinwheels with grilled artichokes, marinated Portobello mushrooms, and baked Hassleback potatoes.  The recipe for Hasselback potatoes is posted on my site, and in the next few days I will post my recipe for grilled artichoke and marinated Portobello mushrooms.  Send out the evite!  Have a BBQ this weekend.  Invite all your special friends and rejuvenate your spirit.

Thanks for stopping by my (outdoor) kitchen today.

P.S. This grilled entree is being added to the summer grilling link party at Family Fresh Cooking! Let’s get Grillin’ with Family Fresh Cooking and Cookin’ Canuck, sponsored by Ile de France Cheese, Rösle, Emile Henry, ManPans and Rouxbe!

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10 Responses
  1. Lenay says:

    My mouth is watering with this one!!!

  2. Sharon says:

    This looks yummy!!!

  3. This sounds like quite a treat, not just the steak but also the get together with friends. I need to do that soon.

  4. Mary says:

    Wow they look wonderful – your bbq was a great idea

  5. Julene says:

    Wow, looks real good Polly!! I want to try this 🙂

  6. monique says:

    These would be cute for 4th of July! They look great but do look like some work!

    • Polly says:

      They are not too terribly bad Monique–I hope I haven’t put you off trying them. Go for it Julene (and everyone else!) Now look for my post on marinated and grilled portobello mushrooms to serve along side.

  7. Marla says:

    Polly, this is such a fun way to make steak!
    Cookin’ Canuck and I are in week 3 of Get Grillin’ and would love to have you join us. Please link up to 3 entree recipes including this dish. Doing so will qualify you to enter our Ild De France Cheese giveaway. It’s also a way to share your amazing recipes with all of us. http://su.pr/17fizq

  8. Hannah Berry says:

    I made this last night for a pre-July-4th-celebration! They were YUMMY! We loved it when we got to the middle part and there was some oozy cheese, salty pruschuitto and lots of other big flavors. The sage was an excellent touch, made it a little earthy and full of flavor. This is going in my cookbook for sure! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Sonya says:

    Polly, you’re right about this recipe being a hassle, one of the sort that is SO delicious that it is all worth it in the end, and you happily know that you will do it again just to enjoy such wonderful food again! We LOVED this too! I made half of mine as the variation that uses spinach and pine nuts instead of the prosciutto. Kenji mentioned using Asiago in that one for his article, so while he didn’t say anything about the Asiago in the actual recipe text, I used Asiago with the spinach variation and LOVED it. The funny thing was that my husband and I both strongly preferred one of the variations over the other (he loved the original with prosciutto and provolone, I loved the spinach/pine nuts variation with Asiago), and found the other one’s favorite kind of “meh”, which I suspect was because of the different flavors of the cheeses. Anyway, this recipe was the BOMB, just amazing decadence on a plate, and it deserves a lot of love 🙂

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