From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...This is the second of the two sandwiches we served this weekend, and at the risk of seeming immodest, I think it's the best steak sandwich I've ever had. There is a play of textures and flavors here that is hard to beat. The citrus marinade lightly penetrates the steak and imparts a vaguely southwestern flavor to the finished sandwich. I use flat iron steak for the sandwich because I've found it to be more flavorful and tender than other cuts of beef, but if needs be, use flank or a tender sirloin steak in its stead. If you aren't able to get a loaf of ciabatta bread, use rolls with a slightly resistant crust and soft center, and if Gruyere cheese is too pricey for your budget, use a Colby or mild cheddar instead. The pickles add texture to this sandwich, so they are a must have ingredient for which there is no substitute. The sandwiches were devoured this weekend, so I know they have mass appeal and they are surprisingly easy to make. This is an old Martha Stewart recipe and I guarantee that when you take your first bite, you'll hear her whisper, "It's a good thing." Here is how this "good thing" is made.
Steak Sandwiches ...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Martha Stewart
1 small white onion, sliced into 1/4-inch rings
1/2 cup fresh orange juice (from 2 oranges)
1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from 2 to 4 limes)
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1-1/2 pounds flat iron or flank steak
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 loaf ciabatta (16 inches), split horizontally, halved crosswise
6 ounces Gruyere cheese, thinly sliced
1 whole dill pickle, thinly sliced crosswise
1) Combine onion, juices, cumin, and garlic in a shallow dish. Add steak, and let stand, turning once, for 20 minutes.
2) Preheat a grill pan to medium-high and oven to 400 degrees. Pat steak dry, and season with salt and pepper. Grill to desired doneness, 5 to 6 minutes per side for medium-rare. Let rest.
3) Grill onion for 2 to 3 minutes. Discard marinade.
4) Butter bread. Grill, buttered side down, for 2 minutes. Place cheese on bottom halves, and bake in oven until melted.
5) Slice steak thinly, against the grain. Top cheese with pickle, steak, onion, and bread. Halve each sandwich, and serve. Yield: 4 servings.
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