Ready to cook over an open fire?
Recently, Linda Ly of Garden Betty gave us the best tips to up that outdoor campfire grilling — begone burgers and hot dogs! There must be a better to do things, because, life is too short to eat bad food.
The three recipes include a Korean flank steak (it’s COVID-friendly, since everyone can cook their own), a foil pack French dip (yum!), and a sweet potato hash from her cookbooks, The Backyard Fire Cookbook, and The New Camp Cookbook.
For the last one, assign one person to the ladle for distributing servings to keep things safe.
Korean Flank Steak with Sriracha-Pickled Cucumbers
For the Pickles
- 2⁄3 cup white vinegar 160 ml
- 2⁄3 cup water 160 ml
- 1⁄3 cup sugar 67 g
- 2 tablespoons sriracha
- 1 medium English cucumber thinly sliced on the diagonal (about ½ pound/226 g)
For the Steak
- ½ cup soy sauce 120 ml
- ¼ cup rice vinegar 60 ml
- 2 tablespoons minced ginger
- 2 tablespoons sriracha
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 scallions finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 flank steak (1 ½ pound), cut in half 680 g
- 2 ¼ cups water 535 ml
- 1 ½ cups uncooked long-grain white rice 300 g
- Lettuce leaves
- To make the pickles, stir together the vinegar, water, sugar, and sriracha in a small bowl until the sugar is dissolved. Pack the cucumbers into a lidded container and pour in the brine. Chill
- overnight and up to 2 weeks.
- To make the steak, whisk together the soy sauce, vinegar, ginger, sriracha, sesame oil, sugar, scallions, and garlic in a small bowl until well blended. Reserve half the sauce in a lidded container and chill. Add the remaining sauce and the steak to a resealable plastic bag and shake to coat thoroughly. Squeeze out the excess air, then chill overnight and up to 24 hours.
- To serve, bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan. Stir in the rice. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer until all of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender and fluffy, 15 to 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare a grill over medium-high heat.
- Place the steak on the hottest part of the grill and cook for 2 to 4 minutes on each side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes. Thinly slice the steak against the grain.
- Drizzle the steak with the reserved sauce brought from home. Serve with the lettuce leaves, rice, and pickles.
Foil Pack French Dip
- Olive oil cooking spray, for preparing the aluminum foil
For the Au Jus
- 4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter 56 g
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour 8 g
- 2 cups well-seasoned beef broth 480 ml
- ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- Kosher salt
- Ground black pepper
For the Sandwiches
- 8 tablespoons 1 stick, or butter, at room temperature 112 g
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley 4 g
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 pound (about 16 inches), halved widthwise so you have 2 (8-inch, or 20 cm) loaves 454 g
- Dijon mustard for spreading
- 12 slices provolone cheese
- 1 pound thinly sliced deli roast beef 454 g
- Prepare a medium-hot two-zone fire in a charcoal grill (see page 26) with a grill grate over the coals.
- Measure two sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil (at least 18 inches, or 45 cm, long) and mist the surface of each sheet with cooking spray. Set aside until needed.
- To make the au jus: On the stovetop, in a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk the flour into the butter and cook, whisking frequently, until the flour is incorporated and the mixture thickens, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add the broth and Worcestershire and whisk to combine. Increase the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Boil the au jus until it thickens slightly. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm until ready to use.
- To make the sandwiches: In a small bowl, using a fork, mash the butter, parsley, Worcestershire, garlic powder, onion powder, and pepper until well combined.
- Cut even slits about ó inch (1 cm) apart in each loaf, stopping just before you slice through the bottom so the slices hold together. You should have 12 equal “slices” of bread per loaf.
- Spread a thin layer of the butter mixture on one side of every other slice. Spread a thin layer of Dijon on the opposite side of each buttered slice. Starting at the end of each loaf, tuck 1 slice of provolone and 2 slices of roast beef between the buttered and Dijon sides, so when the bread is pulled apart when serving they will become individual sandwiches.
- Place a loaf in the center of each prepared foil sheet and lightly coat the tops and sides of the bread with the remaining butter mixture. Fold and seal the foil into packets (see page 76).
- Place the foil packets on the grate over direct heat. Grill for 5 to 10 minutes, turning frequently, until the bread is toasted and the cheese is melted. If you’d like to add a bit more crispness, move the foil packs over indirect heat, open the packs to expose the top and sides of each loaf, and close the grill lid. Continue grilling for about 5 minutes more, until the bread is golden brown all the way through.
- Serve the French dips family style with au jus on the side and let your guests pull apart their own sandwiches.
Sweet Potato, Apple, and Pancetta Hash
- 6 ounces pancetta cut into small dice
- 1 small yellow onion finely chopped
- 2 medium apples cored and cut into ½-inch (1-cm) dice (about 1 pound/450 g)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 large sweet potatoes peeled and cut into ½- inch (1-cm) dice (about 2 ½ pounds/1 kg)
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 cups 65 g packed baby spinach
- 4 large eggs
- Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pancetta and cook until browned and crispy, 5 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer the pancetta to a large plate, reserving the fat in the skillet.
- Let the fat reheat for about 1 minute. Add the onion and cook until it starts to turn translucent, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the apples and cook until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the onion and apples to the plate of pancetta.
- Reheat the skillet and lightly coat the bottom with the oil. Add the sweet potatoes in a single layer and cook undisturbed until browned on the bottom, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle the red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper on top and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are tender.
- Return the pancetta, onion, and apples to the skillet and stir to combine. Add the spinach and cook until wilted, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Using a spoon, make 4 deep wells in the mixture. Crack an egg into each well, cover the skillet, and cook until the yolks are just set, 8 to 10 minutes. (If you like your yolks less runny, poach for a few additional minutes.)