Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Sunnydale: Come for the Food, Stay for the Dismemberment!

A very interesting party invitation showed up in my Google Reader a couple of weeks ago, and, as my friends know, I've been obsessing over it since then. Stephanie at Dispensing Happiness called for appetizers and drinks in the theme of Buffy the Vampire Slayer... and all I could think about was finding a mug.

A little background - I'm only a recent Buffy convert, but it didn't take more than an episdoe to get me hooked. Thankfully, I was able to fly through all seven seasons on DVD. When I started library school last year, I tried to find a copy of Giles' "Kiss the Librarian" mug, but the search got difficult and I gave up. This party invite started the search anew, and I had people across the country searching for something similar. Still no luck. So, using a little Buffy girl power, I took matters into my own hands and painted the damn mug myself. Yes, I am a geek.

With the important matters out of the way, I had to decide on an appetizer. Not knowing what kind of party this would be (gathering - brie, mellow song stylings; shindig - dip, less mellow song stylings, perhaps a large amount of malt beverage; or hootenanny - chock full of hoot, just a little bit of nanny), I went with something that would work for all three.

Staked and Dusted Flank Steak with Rhubarb Dipping Sauce
1 pound flank steak
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup olive oil
4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
salt and pepper
4 stalks rhubarb (about 1 pound), chopped
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 Tbsp cider vinegar
6 Tbsp honey
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard

Place steak, soy sauce, oil, and roughly chopped garlic in a large ziploc bag and let marinate overnight in the fridge. Remove from fridge roughly 1 hour before cooking.

While steak is warming up, chop rhubarb and garlic and combine in a medium pot with vinegar, honey, salt, and mustard. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until the rhubarb falls apart. Transfer mixture to a blender or use a stick blender to give the sauce a smooth texture (you can add some red food coloring here if you really want to go for the bloody effect).

On a grill at roughly medium-high heat, grill steak for about 4 minutes on each side. Let meat rest for 10 minutes before slicing thinly against the grain. Thread steak strips on skewers and dust with fresh black pepper and sea salt. Serve with rhubarb sauce for dipping.

Bloody Cosmos - I know, not really a cosmo, but it's close enough for me
2 oz. cranberry vodka
4 oz. blood orange juice
lime-flavored seltzer

In a tall glass filled with ice, combine vodka and orange juice. Top off with seltzer and give it a good stir (bendy straw optional).

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