Flank steak is a lean cut of beef from below the loin. Since it's so muscular it's full of flavour but needs to be cooked properly to avoid becoming dry and tough. Here's how to make the perfect flank steak.
A good marinade is flank steak's best friend. Ideally you'll marinate your steak overnight, but as long as you marinate it for at least an hour you should have a juicy, flavourful steak at the end. Our butchers have vacuum-sealed marinated flank steaks ready in the meat department, or make your own marinade at home. Here's our chimichurri marinade recipe:
Pulse garlic cloves in a food processor with extra virgin olive oil. Add fresh parsley leaves, cilantro, ground cumin, lime juice, salt and red chili flakes. Pulse until finely chopped. Pour ¾ of the chimichurri marinade over the flank steak, refrigerate and marinate. Save the rest of the chimichurri to use while cooking.
A perfect flank steak has a gorgeous brown crust on the outside with a tender, medium-rare centre. To get that, set your pan to sear! First you'll want to heat some canola oil over medium-high heat in a frying pan (cast iron if you've got it). Once the whole pan is hot, add your flank steak and sear 6 minutes per side. Only flip the steak once - it's a thin steak and you're trying to build a crust, not cook it evenly throughout.
This is true of any cooked meat, and an essential part of making a perfect steak. Transfer your cooked flank steak to a cutting board and let it rest for 10 minutes (if you leave it in the pan it will continue to cook from the residual heat). Although it can be torturous to wait, resting the steak will allow the fibres to relax and re-absorb juices that moved around during cooking.
Slice it Right
The thinner you slice flank steak, the more tender it will be. Once your steak has rested, cut it horizontally across the grain and at a slight vertical angle. Heat up leftover marinade if you saved any and pour it over the strips of steak to reinforce that flavour. Serve the steak right away with roasted potatoes, herbed rice or your favourite sides.