Last night I was in the mood for a simple, but not boring, steak and potato dinner. I know I am in the minority, but I am going to admit that I am not a huge fan of the baked potato or the mashed potato, for that matter. However, I adore all of the crispier resulting potato preparations. For instance, I could eat an entire bag of Utz potato chips (any flavor), and if the old saying "you are what you eat" were true I would be a french fry! I guess it must be a textural thing. No matter if you adore the fluffy texture of the baked potato or prefer the crispy potato skin, my version allows you to enjoy the best of both potato worlds!
I used a large Idaho baking potato which I washed thoroughly and baked for 1 hour in a 350 degree oven. Baking the potato in the oven ensures a light, fluffy texture with the crispiest skin. However, if you are in a time crunch, you can cook the potato in the microwave for about 4-6 minutes on high depending on the size of the potato. Allow to cool for about 10-15 minutes or until it is cool enough to handle. Cut the potato in half lengthwise and carefully scoop out the potato pulp being sure to leave most of the potato intact in the shell. (Hint: save the pulp you scooped out, it makes a delicious potato pancake which is so tasty in the morning with a fried egg!) Place the potato shells in a baking dish and drizzle with melted butter and olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake for about 30 min. at 425 degrees. Obviously, this is the basic technique for making potato skins but the topping possibities are endless. Try them with crumbled bacon, green onions and melted cheddar or stuff with broccoli and cheese or even chili. Smaller potatoes work great too as an appetizer.
I started the flank steak by marinating it about 2 hours before dinner. The marinade I used included 2 minced cloves of garlic, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 cup red wine and a splash of olive oil. Mixed it well and added it to a zip lock bag with the flank steak. When it was time to cook, I preheated my favorite lodge double burner cast iron griddle/grill pan over medium heat until wafts of smoke were visible. Before placing the beef on the grill to cook, it is very important to drain/discard the marinade and dry the meat as thoroughly as possible. This step will promote a lovely brown crust and prevent the meat from steaming in the marinade. Salt and pepper both sides of the steak and cook on the grill for about 5-6 minutes per side. After removing from the grill, allow the steak to rest, tented with foil on a plate to collect the juices. Thinly slice against the grain and serve with the potato skins (and a vegetable, but as I've said before I am not fond of green on my plate, so this is an example of do as I say and not as I do!)
I am a dipping sauce fanatic! This one is very simple, but so tasty and I use it all of the time. Combine 2 tablespoons of mayonaise, 1 tablespoon of ketchup, 1 tablespoon of horseradish and 1 teaspoon of garlic chili sauce. Chill for 10 minutes to allow flavors to combine. Also great with french fries and onion rings!