Big Fresno Fair - Round 2, Part 2

The Big Fresno Fair barbeque contest was so big a few weeks ago, that it needed a second part.

Continuing with the “all in the family” theme, there was Kevin, his sister Veleda and her step-son Camden all entering the barbeque contest.

Kevin has been in this contest for a few years and always “wows” all of us, this year was no exception. Kevin entered the Healthy Choice category and took first place with his Italian Flat Iron Steaks with Panzanella Relish. Since I was sitting right behind the judges, I was able to ease-drop a little - the judges were so pleasantly surprised that by the flat steaks being tender, moist and juicy.

I decided I needed a taste of Kevin’s creation because the steak was getting rave reviews and the relish looked so delicious. I am sorry to say that with all the hullaballoo of the day, I did not get a photo but I did get a taste! It was delicious – all of it! The steak was thinly sliced, tender, juicy, medium rare with the wonderful relish that had surprising cubes of grilled Italian bread. You have to try this one!

As the competition progressed, Kevin’s sister, Veleda served Grilled Fresh Water Prawns with a Coconut Curry Glaze in the Winners’ Circle category. And Veleda’s step-son, Camden, entered for the first time, serving Grilled Honey Herb Salmon.

At the end of the day, Kevin won first place in Healthy Choice, Veleda won 2nd place in Winners’ Circle and Camden won 2nd place in Junior BBQ. What a talented family!

Here’s Kevin’s recipe to try at home:

Italian Flat Iron Steaks with Panzanella Relish
1 side flat iron steak or 4 individual 4 oz steaks
2 tbsp Italian seasoning
1 – 2 tbsp garlic paste
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp honey
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine above and refrigerate for 2 – 4 hours.
Preheat gas or charcoal grill.
Grill steak over hot coals (or flames) approximately 3 – 4 minutes each side depending on desired degree of doneness. Set aside and cover loosely with foil to keep warm and rest for 10 minutes.

Panzanella Relish
1 ½ cubed grilled Italian bread
1 large roasted yellow or red bell pepper, diced
½ English cucumber diced
½ medium sized onion diced
½ cup diced tomatoes
¼ cup mixed chopped herbs (basil, Italian parsley, oregano, arugula or tarragon)
¼ cup sliced olives (such as Kalamata)
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp honey
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Anchovy filets (optional)

Mix relish ingredients together in a large bowl. Set aside while meat is resting.

Slice steak on the bias. Top with Panzanella relish. Top with anchovy filets, if desired. Drizzle with good quality extra virgin olive oil. Serve immediately.

Serves 4 people
By Kevin Tiyaamornwong

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