Carne Asada Perfected and Two Wines

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The Background

My wife and I have been working on perfecting the right combination of meat, spices and wine for a Carne Asada meal. After many attempts, pleased to announce we have a delicious recipe!

The Changes

Change #1 — So we scratched the idea of using a skirt steak and went with a flank steak!  The marinated recipe that my wife prepared called for juice from one lime, juice from one orange, soy sauce, garlic, cilantro, Habanero peppers and Chipotle peppers in an Adobo sauce put into a plastic bag and left to marinate in the refrigerator. The bag and meat were turned and shaken anytime we passed the refrigerator.

Change #2 – It now sat in the refrigerator for 24-26 hour instead of 4-6 hours. 


Change #3 – We exchanged the Habanero peppers and used Jalapeño peppers. Also all the seeds placed in the marinated freezer bag to marinate.

Change #4 – On a tip from our friend after cooking the meat, it was sliced across against the grain.

The Food Pairing

The Carne Asada was flavorful and spicy without being in your face red-hot! A drizzle of fresh squeezed lime juice topped off the meat.  Served with a Spanish rice dish that was spicy with crushed red peppers and tomatoes. Sautéed asparagus with garlic and a fresh baked French roll topped the meal. The bread came in handy with the heat of the rice mostly.

The Wine Pairing

Two wines were served with the meal. The first from the cellar, was the 2012 Crocker & Starr Casili 5. This is a blend of 82% Malbec and 18% Cabernet Franc. This wine was aged 18 months in 60% new French oak. On the eyes a dark purple coloration and medium viscosity. On the nose and palate, raspberry, dark plum and floral aromas abound. The acidity is mellow and the tannins were rounded and silky smooth. This turned out to be a very enjoyable wine to “balance the heat of the meal”. Only 500 cases were produced and the current release ‘Casali 11’ is sold out at $90. ‘Casali 12’ will be out in April 2021.

The second wine was brought by our friends of 45 years plus. They brought a 2006 Ridge Syrah from the Lytton Estate. This winery is located in Cupertino and used 92% Syrah and 8% Viognier. The wine spent twenty-four months in American oak with various levels of age (new and old). This was a full body and nicely structured wine which also proved excellent with the meal.

This meal was “spot on” with flavor, aromas and just the right about of heat/spice in the beef.  This took four variations but the journey was worth the end result! Both wines provided a great compliment with the pairing of the meat.




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