Salt Block Root Beer Steak
You’re probably wondering what a salt block root beer steak is, and you’d be right to, because well..until now, that has definitely not been a thing.
Here’s what happened: I had two exciting new products burning a whole in my kitchen, waiting to be used.
1) My still unused Christmas present: a Himalayan pink salt block from the Meadow. Salt blocks allow you to cook foods at 600-degree temperatures, while the salt rapidly sears proteins, caramelizes sugar, and yes, adds a wee bit of salty deliciousness. By the way, this is how beautiful it looks before you get into the nitty gritty of grilling on it:
2) A bottle of McCormick Root Beer Concentrate that came my way as part of McCormick’s Flavor of Together program, a yearlong initiative to share 1.25 million stories about how flavor both unites and defines people across the globe.
So, what exactly is root beer concentrate? Well, it’s kind of like vanilla extract, except instead of vanilla it adds a dash of root beer flavor to whatever you’re cooking.
In 1889, Willoughby M. McCormick went door to door selling one of McCormick & Company’s first products, Root Beer Extract. From there, the product quickly rose in popularity and led to a trending sensation of root beer floats and root beer home brewing in the early 1900s. In 2014, McCormick marks its 125th anniversary by celebrating the role flavor plays in all of our lives, inspiring flavorful conversation, and giving back to communities around the world. They asked me to come up with my own Root Beer Concentrate recipe…and clearly I was not going to make a plain old root beer float.
I’ve glazed meat in coke before, so I figured, why not root beer meat?
– Two tablespoons olive oil
– One teaspoon McCormick Root Beer Concentrate
– One dash of dark rum
I mixed this all together and threw it in a Zip-Lock bag with my slab of flank steak…let that all chill for an hour while I heated up my salt block.
The method for salt block-grilled flank steak, according to Mark Bitterman’s Salted, is to heat your salt block up to 600 degrees, cut your steak against the grain, and then throw your pieces on the sizzling block for just five seconds per side. I am unsure if your salt block is supposed to get as funky as mine in the photo below but…oh well — it all came out when cleaned afterwards.
The verdict: definitely a fan of root beer on meat. It adds a nice little tingle to a sizzling slice of steak (and of course, you could marinade meat in this and then cook in a plain old pan, if that’s more your style). The salt block cooking is more fun and different than anything — I can’t say the steak tasted revelatory, but it does cook excellently — with a nice, instantly seared crust and perfectly tender interior.
So, yeah — that’s what a salt block root beer steak is!
Share your own unique flavor story by commenting on this post using the hashtag #flavorstory and be entered for a chance to win a McCormick Anniversary Pack. The pack includes exclusive McCormick Anniversary Edition product (both black pepper and vanilla extract – not available in stores!), a McCormick recipe book, and a branded canvas tote – all valued at $50.