Grilled Skirt Steak with Green Salsa Macha and Tortillas

You need this crunchy, herby, olive-oily salsa in your life, and so does your steak.

Ceramics by Francisco Martinez

Inspired by the crunchy salsa of dried red chiles, peanuts, and sesame seeds bound in fragrant olive oil that hails from the Mexican state of Veracruz, this green version of salsa macha includes fresh herbs and serrano chiles. It tastes amazing on (almost) everything and anything, but especially well-charred skirt steak cooked on a charcoal grill. Spoon leftovers on fried eggs the next morning.

Makes 4 servings

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup raw pepitas (green pumpkin seeds), chopped
  • 1/4 cup raw peanuts, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons untoasted sesame seeds
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 serrano chiles, minced
  • Juice of 1 lime, plus lime wedges for serving
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 1/2 pounds skirt steak
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Warm tortillas, for serving

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Heat the oil over medium-low in a 10-inch skillet. Once hot, add the pepitas, peanuts, sesame seeds, and garlic. Cook until everything is lightly toasted and aromatic, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the chiles, lime juice, and a few big pinches of salt, then cool to room temperature. Once cooled, stir in the cilantro and oregano. Taste and add more salt as needed. The salsa will keep in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  2. Prepare a grill for high heat direct cooking. Season the skirt steaks generously with salt and set aside while the grill heats.
  3. Just before grilling, pat the steaks super dry with paper towels and season again with a little more salt and lots of pepper. Oil the grates and place the steak over the hottest part of the grill. Cook until nicely charred on both sides, turning once, 2 to 4 minutes per side. (Assuming your grill is truly hot, the inside should be medium rare once both sides are charred.) Let the steak rest for about 5 minutes.
  4. Cut the steak into 3-inch sections, then slice against the grain into strips. Serve hot with some of the salsa macha spooned over top and the rest passed at the table, along with warm tortillas and lime wedges.

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Griddled Feta with Herby Apricot Salsa

This salty, sweet, crusty hot cheese is your new go-to summer app.

Ceramic plate by Dina No

Apricot season is fleeting, so make this now and serve it with a bottle of gewurztraminer to everyone’s delight. If peaches or nectarines are on hand, they’re equally delicious in this herbaceous topping that’s just sweet enough to balance the saltiness of crispy hot feta.

Makes 4 servings

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

  • 2 cups diced fresh apricots
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped sweet herbs, such as basil, lemon verbena, and/or mint
  • 1 green onion, white and green parts thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for frying
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Aleppo pepper or piment d’Espelette, or 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 (8-ounce) block feta cheese (preferably not in brine), at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 batch Spicy Homemade Pita Chips

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Toss the apricots with the herbs, onion, oil, vinegar, Aleppo pepper (or other chile flakes), and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside to marinate while cooking the feta, or up to 2 hours.
  2. Pat the feta as dry as possible with paper towels. Place a small cast-iron or nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, and pour in enough olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan with a thin layer. Wait until it’s shimmering hot, then dredge both sides of the block of feta in the cornstarch (but not edges), brush off excess, and place the feta in the pan. Cook until crisp and browned, then carefully flip using a large heatproof spatula and cook on the other side, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
  3. Carefully transfer the hot feta to a serving plate. Drizzle with honey and spoon some of the apricot salsa over top. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve hot, with pita chips and the rest of the salsa on the side.

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Spicy Homemade Pita Chips

For all your hummus and creamy cheese needs.

SloBurn approved Aleppo Pepper

Rustic pita chips with crisp edges and a slight chew in the center are the best for dipping in hummus, but are also the ideal accompaniment to Griddled Feta with Herby Apricot Salsa.

Makes 8 to 12 servings

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

  • 6 pitas (about 14 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon coarse dried chile powder, such as Aleppo pepper or Korean gochugaru, or crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon flaky sea salt

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Preheat the oven to 400˚F with a rack in the bottom and top thirds.
  2. Tear the pita into roughly 2-inch pieces and arrange them in a single layer on two large rimmed baking sheets. Drizzle them evenly with the olive oil and sprinkle with the chile and salt.
  3. Bake until lightly browned and mostly crisp (a bit of tenderness in the very center is nice), 7 to 12 minutes, depending on thickness and moisture content. Remove the pans from the oven and cool the chips completely.
  4. Store It: The chips will keep in a covered container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

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Five Spice Pork Chops with Grilled Apricots (or Peaches)

A Vietnamese-ish marinade, sticky charred fruit, and garlic chips for your chops

Wood Cutting board by Blackcreek Mercantile

Usually we’d say thick-cut pork chops are the way to go, but thinner cuts allow for more surface area to soak up this ridiculously good Vietnamese-inspired marinade. Either way, you can’t go wrong. Just make sure to smear on a bit of those sticky charred apricots or peaches and pick up a crunchy garlic chip with each bite. A bowl of steamed jasmine rice makes it a meal.

Serves 4

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons Chinese five spice powder
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 4 bone-in pork chops
  • 4 ripe apricots or peaches, halved and pitted
  • Sliced jalapeños, cilantro, and mint, for serving

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Place a fine-mesh sieve over a heatproof bowl and set it near the stove. Heat the oil in an 8-inch skillet or shallow saucepan set over medium-low heat. Once the oil is shimmering hot, add the garlic and separate the slices into an even layer. Cook with a gentle sizzle until golden brown, stirring occasionally, 5 to 10 minutes. When they are lightly toasted and feel a bit crisp, immediately pour the contents of the pan into the sieve, catching the garlic chips in the sieve and the oil in the bowl. Set the oil aside to cool, and scatter the garlic chips in a single layer on a plate lined with a paper towel. Reserve the cooled garlic chips and garlic-infused oil in separate containers.
  2. Combine the fish sauce, soy sauce, ginger, five spice powder, and honey in a shallow dish that will fit the pork chops snuggly (or a zip-top plastic bag, if you prefer). Add 2 tablespoons of the garlic oil and swish it around to combine. Prick the pork chops all over with the tines of a fork, and add them to the marinade, turning to coat well. Cover and marinate at room temperature for at least 1 hour, or chill up to 8 hours.
  3. Prepare a grill for medium heat direct cooking and oil the grates.
  4. Pluck the pork chops from the marinade, allowing excess to drip off, and place them on the grill. Cook, turning occasionally, until cooked to 135˚F in the center, which can take from 6 to 12 minutes, depending on thickness. Brush the cut sides of the peaches with some of the reserved garlic oil and place them on the grill, cut sides down, around the pork chops, until lightly charred, 6 to 8 minutes. Turn the apricots and grill for a minute or two on the other side until lightly charred but not mushy. Collect the pork chops and apricots on a serving platter as they’re done.
  5. Serve hot, with the garlic chips, jalapeños, and herbs scattered about, and another drizzle of the garlic oil.

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Peaches with Ricotta and Torn Croutons

A deconstructed toast for breakfast and snacking.

A mix of peaches or nectarines is nice

We love a slice of toasted country bread topped with creamy ricotta and fresh seasonal fruit. It’s a breakfast that borders on dessert, but also makes the ideal mid-afternoon snack. Because all those craggy edges of hand-torn croutons are extra crispy (more surface area, more crunch), this deconstructed version is even better. Scoop up some ricotta onto a crouton, place a slice of peach on top, and each and every bite is the perfect bite.

Serves 4

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

  • 2 cups country bread torn in bite-size pieces (including some crust)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup whole-milk ricotta
  • 2 peaches, pitted and cut into wedges
  • Ground pink peppercorns or freshly ground black pepper, to finish

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Toss the torn bread with the olive oil and a big pinch of salt on a large rimmed baking sheet. Spread the bread in a single layer, and bake until crunchy and deep golden brown on the outside but still soft and chewy in the center, 10 to 20 minutes, depending on the moisture content of the bread. Cool to room temperature.
  3. Mound the ricotta on a serving platter and create a well in the center with the back of the spoon. Pile the croutons on one side of the platter, and the peaches and nectarines on the other. Drizzle some olive oil into the ricotta well and a little over the fruit. Sprinkle both with pepper, and serve.

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Salted Watermelon Salad

Take melon to the savory side.

A salt punch from cured olives and aged pecorino lures watermelon to the savory side in this refreshing peak summer salad.

Makes 6 servings

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

  • 1 small seedless watermelon (4 to 4 1/2 pounds), rind removed, cut into big bite-size triangles (about 8 cups)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup oil-cured black olives, smashed, pitted, and coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup crumbled pecorino romano cheese

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Gently toss the watermelon triangles with the salt in a large bowl. Add the oil and vinegar and toss again.
  2. Arrange the watermelon on a serving platter and drizzle with the juices from the bowl. Scatter the olives and pecorino on top, and serve immediately.

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Swedish Pancakes with Strawberry-Rhubarb Syrup

The weekend breakfast you’ll be thinking about by Friday.

Dinnerware by Carter & Co

Swedish pancakes are basically a hybrid between lacy French crèpes and fluffy American flapjacks—their thickness lands somewhere in the middle. Make them with spelt flour or whole-wheat flour for extra flavor (and nutrition), but all-purpose works great, too. They are traditionally served for dessert, but no one will judge if this is your new go-to Saturday breakfast.

Makes 12 pancakes

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk, divided
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups spelt flour or whole-wheat flour
  • Unsalted butter, for cooking
  • Sour cream or yogurt, for serving
  • 1 batch Strawberry-Rhubarb Sheet-Pan Syrup, warm
  • Powdered sugar, for serving

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Beat the eggs until frothy in a large mixing bowl. Add 1/2 cup of the milk, the sugar, salt, and vanilla and whisk to combine. Add the flour and whisk until smooth, then slowly pour in the remaining 2 cups of milk while whisking constantly.
  2. Heat a 10-inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add a small pat of butter and swirl to coat the bottom. Once the butter is melted and beginning to brown, add 1/3 cup of the batter and quickly swirl the pan so the batter reaches the edges in an even layer. (The first one may be sacrificial, and that’s okay.) Cook until bubbles appear and the surface looks dry, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip with a spatula, and continue cooking until the second side is evenly browned, about 2 minutes.
  3. Transfer the pancake to a plate and cover with a kitchen towel. Add another pat of butter to the pan and repeat to cook more pancakes, using up the remaining batter. Be sure to stir the batter well between batches, and adjust the heat as needed if the pan gets too hot. As they are done, stack the pancakes on top of the first one and cover to keep warm.
  4. Fold each pancake in half and then in half again. Serve topped with sour cream, the warm syrup, and a dusting of powdered sugar.

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Strawberry-Rhubarb Sheet-Pan Syrup

Everything is made on a sheet pan now, including syrup.

It’s as straightforward as sprinkling a pile of cut strawberries and rhubarb with brown sugar and lemon, spreading it on a sheet pan, and putting it in the oven, and that is why we love this syrup so much. Well, that and the fact that the sticky, tart, fruity deliciousness that gets scraped off said sheet pan goes on top of everything from a scoop of vanilla ice cream to a slice of pound cake to freshly griddled Swedish pancakes.

Makes about 2 cups

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

  • 1 pound strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 12 ounces rhubarb, trimmed and cut in 1/2-inch pieces
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice plus 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Pile the strawberries, rhubarb, brown sugar, lemon juice, and zest on a large rimmed baking sheet and mix to combine. Spread the mixture in an even layer.
  3. Roast until the rhubarb and strawberries are meltingly tender but still hold their shape and the juice is syrupy, 20 to 25 minutes.
  4. Scrape the chunky syrup into a heat-safe container, getting every last delicious drop off the pan. Keep warm if serving immediately, or cool completely to store.
  5. Store It: The cooled syrup will keep, covered, in the refrigerator for at least 1 week.

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Rhubarb-Elderflower Spritz

The word “spritz” just sounds refreshing, don’t you think?

Served up in a wine glass from Crate & Barrel

If you’ve made this poached rhubarb and some syrup remains, it’s cocktail time. Infused with tarragon, vanilla, and the intoxicating essence of rhubarb, that syrup is liquid gold, and it pairs perfectly with floral St. Germain.

Makes 1 cocktail

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[ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

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[directions title=”Directions”]

  1. Fill a wine glass with ice. Pour in the St. Germain and syrup and stir. Top with the sparkling wine and soda water.
  2. Garnish with flowers and serve.

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