I didn’t think it was humanly possible. But after a month in Southern California, followed by a month of Cinco de Mayo recipe testing anticipation, followed by a week (Uno through Siete) of celebrating said holiday, I may have officially OD-ed on tortilla chips.
I came to this realization on Sunday evening while I stood over yet another vat of homemade guacamole, wrapping yet another stack of corn tortillas in foil to get warm and toasty for fish tacos. Luckily the novelty of the situation (teaching a healthy Mexican cooking class in the comfort of my home!), coupled with the fact that I will never (not ever) OD on mashed avocado, meant that I still inhaled those ‘tillas like a champ. But all of this is to say: while usually I would serve up something like this, this or this for a holiday weekend, I’m going to shake up my Memorial Day grill game with a little Mediterranean inspiration. Specifically, these herb marinated steak gyros from the Plated Cookbook.
One of the most delicious highlights from May’s tortilla parade was when I got invited to Plated HQ to help the lovely kitchen dream team celebrate their latest accomplishment: a beautiful collection of “choose your own adventure” recipes. Elana and Suz (the aforementioned dream team) had the bloggers in attendance each prepare one of the seasonal salsas to accompany their shrimp tacos. The brilliant part of the book is that each weeknight recipe has a variation for each season. In this case, butternut squash salsa for fall, orange for winter, melon for summer and avocado for spring. So practical, and in the case of this particular adventure, crazy delicious.
I was planning on sharing these tacos with you. But then tortilla fatigue hit. So instead, I skipped to the chapter on recipes that make for amazing next day leftovers, plus ideas for what to do with them. Since it’s the big grill kick-off this weekend, my mind immediately went to steak. And since your enthusiasm might yield quite a few meaty leftovers by Monday, the Plated recipe for steak gyros with yogurt sauce.
The marinade calls for all the big guns of Mediterranean flavor: fresh oregano, rosemary, thyme, lemon, garlic and olive oil. If you don’t have the luxury of a garden, or have managed to kill one too many window-boxes full of herbs (like yours truly), you can feel free to use a mix of dried and fresh. It will taste best with the latter, but if you don’t want to splurge on 3 small clamshells of various sprigs (and therein lies the beauty of Plated’s services!), dried rosemary and thyme definitely work.
The tomato-onion salad just keeps getting better the longer it sits. So even if you’re not making intentional leftovers, it’s a great make-ahead option. The recipe calls for crumbled feta, which I omitted (with the tortillas, also came a lot of cheese, and I’m trying to take it down a notch). Instead of plain yogurt, I made my go-to yogurt tahini sauce and added a little parsely to the mix.
And finally, to make my steak gyros gluten-free friendly, I tried my hand at these chickpea pitas. Unfortunately, my first attempt came out delicious, but not sturdy or pliable enough to stuff the steak inside. I may have overbeaten the batter. (Will trouble shoot with Jodi and try again.) Regardless, my gyros tasted just as delicious as deconstructed plates instead of pockets. But if you’re an omnivore and eat the people’s pita (I’m jealous), then go to town. On an auspicious day weeks into the future, I may even consider stuffing this tasty tender skirt steak in a warm corn tortilla. Who knows.
No matter how you serve it, Plated ladies’ herb marinated steak is a total winner, and very worthy of your first grill sesh of the season. And for more super practical ideas for weeknight meals, weekend feasts and so on, make sure to pick up their cookbook!
If you’re looking for more ideas for the big weekend, make sure to check out what some of the other peeps are bringing to the #greatbloggerBBQ below!
From one healthy hedonist to another,
Herb Marinated Steak Gyros Plates with Tomato-Onion Salad
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 2 sprigs fresh oregano
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 lemons
- Sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil divided
- 1 1/2 pounds skirt steak
- 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
- 1 small red onion
- 1/4 cup parsley leaves
- Tahini yogurt sauce , see note
- Warm pita
Roughly chop the rosemary, oregano, and thyme leaves. Roughly chop the garlic. Zest one lemon and halve both.
In a medium bowl, combine the rosemary, oregano, thyme garlic, lemon zest, juice of 1 lemon, 1/2 teaspoon sea salt and the crushed red pepper. While whisking, slowly add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the steak and flip a few times until fully coated in the marinade. Cover the bowl and set aside to marinate for at least 30 minutes at room temperature or overnight in the fridge. (If going the fridge route, you transfer to a plastic bag to save space).
While the steak marinates, cut the tomatoes in half and place in a medium mixing bowl. Halve the onions and thinly slice; add to the bowl. Toss the tomatoes with the juice of the remaining lemon, 2 tablespoons olive oil, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
When you’re ready to make the steak, heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Remove the steak from the marinade, allowing the excess to drip off. Season with salt and pepper. When the grill or pan is hot, add the steak and cook until browned on the outside and semi-firm to the touch (for medium rare), about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Set aside to rest for 10 minutes before slicing thinly against the grain.
If you don't love the taste of raw onion, you can swap shallots for something slightly milder. Can't find skirt steak? No sweat, flank works just as well. You may have to cook slightly longer depending on the thickness.
I pureed this lemon-tahini sauce with 1/2 cup parsley leaves for serving