Grilled kale and scallion Negimaki

My Mother is constantly asking me, ‘do you have any good recipes for …’ (name the current vegetable that she has too much of in her garden at the time, and is sick of simply sautéing with garlic).  Recently, both fennel and kale have been on her mind, and therefore on mine as well.  So, when I received my September issue of Food and Wine magazine and saw this recipe in their ‘Art of Summer Cooking’ section, I called up my Mother and asked if I could take some of that kale off her hands.

The recipe in Food and Wine called for tenderloin steak, but due to certain current financial circumstances, I decided to use a lower quality cut of meat.  I picked up two thin cut center cut steaks, which actually worked beautifully for this dish, and marinated them for a bit more than the hour suggested in the magazine.

In the end I was amazed how beautifully this dish turned out and how easy it was to prepare.  It is a great dish to serve for company because in the end it ranks quite high in terms of its ‘wow’ factor.

Negimaki is a Japanese dish that consists of beef rolled around scallions which has been marinated in a teriyaki sauce.  This makes a great main dish, but could be adapted as an appetizer if the rolls are sliced thinner.

Grilled Kale and Scallion Negimaki

Adapted from Food and Wine Magazine, September 2011 (p. 143)
 
1/4 cup tamari (soy sauce)
1/4 cup mirin (rice vinegar) 
1 1/2 Tablespoons red miso or red miso soup mix
1 Tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 pound center cut steak (thin cut and then pounded to 1/8 inch thick)
1/4 pound kale, stems removed
4 to 5 scallions, sliced in half lengthwise 
olive oil
toasted sesame seeds
 
  1. Whisk together the first five ingredients and pour all but a 1/4 cup over the steaks.  Turn the steaks in marinade once or twice and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
  2. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook the kale for about 2 minutes.  Drain in a colander and squeeze out any excess water.
  3. Lay one of the steaks on a cutting board with the long edge facing you.  Place one or two scallions along the edge facing you and then put on a layer of kale with the ends extending beyond the ends of the steak.
  4. Roll the meat tightly around the kale and scallions, then secure the roll with several toothpicks (I used one every inch or so, this made it easy to cut and serve).
  5. Place the rolled up steaks on an oiled grill grate over high heat, turning every 3 minutes, so that all the sides get sufficiently charred.
  6. Just before you remove the rolls from the grill, brush the reserved marinade over the meat and let cook for a few more seconds, so that the meat looks glazed.
  7. Slice the rolls about every inch, between each of the tooth picks.  If possible, remove the tooth picks for serving, but if the steak has not cooked together, simply serve as is.
Makes 3 to 4 servings.
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