1 1/2 to 2 pounds skirt steak
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling
Coarse black pepper
1/2 pound orzo
1 large red onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 fennel bulb, quartered, cored, and thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup chicken stock or broth
1 pint grape tomatoes
10 fresh basil leaves, chopped or torn
1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Coat the skirt steak in balsamic vinegar, a good drizzle of EVOO, and a lot of freshly ground black pepper and marinate in a nonreactive dish for 5 to 10 minutes.
Preheat an outdoor grill or ridged grill pan to high.
Bring a large sauce pot of water to a boil to cook the orzo. Once boiling, salt the water and add the orzo. Cook until al dente, with a bite to it, about 12 minutes.
While the water is coming up to a boil, preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat with the 2 tablespoons of EVOO; add the onions, garlic, fennel, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the veggies are slightly tender.
Season the steak with salt and grill for 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Remove the meat to a plate, tent loosely with foil, and let it rest for 5 minutes to allow the juice to redistribute.
To the veggies, add the chicken stock and grape tomatoes, bring up to a bubble, and cook for 2 minutes, or until the grape tomatoes begin to burst. Add the cooked orzo, basil, parsley, and grated Parmesan cheese and stir to combine.
Slice the meat very thin on a sharp angle. Serve alongside the orzo with the works.
Since Fall Minestrone was the recipe for July 21, and July is not in the Fall, I decided to switch it with October 14th's recipe: Grilled Skirt Steak and Orzo with the Works. I made this recipe last year and loved it. I really like the orzo; it's so creamy and delicious, the fennel gives it great texture, and the tomatoes and basil give it great flavor. The steak was not bad, but I must have not sliced it thin enough because it was very tough. My 2-year-old loved it though. Strange. Anyway, I halved the recipe today, but I didn't change anything except to change Parmigiano-Reggiano to Parmesan cheese.