Sunday, August 1, 2010

Marinated Beef Fillet and an Award!

Today we had great cause for celebration!  Our elusive San Diego sun made an appearance and even as evening approaches it is still shining.  After an entire month of gray, cold, chilly (yes... I'm feeling very sorry for myself!) weather, the bright, beautiful rays of the sun boosted everyone's spirits.  Energy flowed back into my blood, my zucchini plant perked up his little leaves and the kids jumped in the pool!  Our fingers are crossed that our esteemed sun will keep his face shining on us in the days to come.

For our celebration we knew we had to be outside, grilling.  Olivia has been a rabid beef eater since she was about 2.  With her first taste of marinated flank steak, her eyes grew big and a smile spread across her face with the discovery of a new favorite food.  Since then her preference has moved to not just any old beef, but fillets, with her most memorable experience being a 21 day, dry aged fillet at Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill.  That same smile spread across her face as her eyes closed with sheer pleasure at her first bite.  

Unfortunately, Mommy doesn't have access to the same meat buyer as Mr. Flay, so we had to settle for Trader Joe's offerings, which in our opinion are pretty darn good.  Our marinade of choice was our "go to" marinade for just about all cuts of beef that we grill - skirt, flank, flat iron, etc.  

With a touch of cumin and brown sugar to offset the salty soy sauce, we get perfect results every time.  This is one of those marinades that even works in a quick pinch when you realize you forgot to marinate the meat and only have an hour before dinner.  While at least an hour is preferable, we have had decent results with a quick ½ hour dip before grilling.  

So here's to the glorious sun.  May it return tomorrow and the next day... let the summer weather begin!

Steak Marinade

¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup soy sauce (lower in salt is fine)
½ tsp ground cumin
1 Tbs brown sugar
2 garlic cloves, pressed or finely diced

Mix all ingredients together and pour over beef.  Marinate for 2 hours, grill.   


To add to my celebratory mood, I am so excited to announce that I have received an award!  Ela from Everything's Herbed has so kindly bestowed the Versatile Blogger Award to my blog.  Ela lives in the Philippines and the title photo on her blog is an amazing shot of her home and lush yard.  I am beyond speechless, and very humbled to receive such an award.  Ela, I can't thank you enough, whenever I see this award on other sites I will think of you!

In accepting the award, the receiver is to share seven unknown facts about themselves.  I don't have anything amazing to share, but here are the first few things that come to mind... 

  *   I was a Girl Scout Leader for 4 years for my daughter and 16 lovely girls who I miss seeing every week. 

  *   I don't really like Girl Scout Cookies.

  *   I passed pilot ground school and have 4 flight hours.

  *   I like to surf, but I'm not very good at it.

  *   I feel so lucky that my parents only live 5 minutes away.

  *   I love Rubio's.
  *   I love the tropics.

The next part of the award is to do some awarding myself.  As I am such a new blogger, I don't really feel qualified.  However, I do have a couple of bloggers that I have come across in the last few months who I feel truly deserve this award.  

Versatile:  Turning with ease from one thing to another.

As I read this definition, three blogs come immediately to mind.  In no particular order, I would like to pass this award on to:

Tiffany from I Don't Cook, But My Boyfriend Does.  I recently began reading Tiffany's blog and immediately bookmarked several recipes.  I also found a couple of recipes that I had already made and completely concur with her thoughts and impressions.  With both of us being from San Diego (we have never met), I was excited to find her two other blogs, Life in San Diego and I'll Have Another One, both of which have shown me things about my own hometown that I didn't know.  If she doesn't define versatility, I don't know anyone who does!

My second blog to recognize is Try Anything Once.  The writing here is enjoyable and her witty sense of humor often shows.  Here the versatility is evident with recipes of many different kinds, and photos and stories to go with them.  Versatility also shows up when she turns a bit of a disaster into a wonderful meal!  

And my third recognition goes to Sarah at Baking Serendipity.  Sarah's blog is a bit new as well, and her recipes show a great amount of versatility.  From her most current Blueberry Muffins to her Grilled Pizza and on to the Sangria Chicken Salad, her photos, recipes, and writing are all a joy to read and view.  I also want to thank her for welcoming me and kindly helping me out with some blogging etiquette!

Ela, I would like to thank you again for your kindness and generosity in recognizing me with this award!


  1. Congrats on your award and thanks for sharing the tidbits about yourself. :-)

    Your marinade sounds like a winner, too. I'll have to try it sometime, especially since you are recommending it as a short-notice marinade. That will definitely come in handy!

  2. I could take a day or two break from the scorching sun here in the heartland. Good blog!

  3. that sounds like a great marinade. we usually just season our beef and move on with it. i shall point my father (he's the bbq'er in the house) to this page--he could use a little inspiration. ;)

    (i hope this doesnt post twice)

  4. Thanks for passing on the award :) Glad you were able to enjoy a good grilled meal in the sunshine. Crazy how it brightens up our day so, isn't it? So cool that you've logged flight hours! My husband is an airplane and helicopter pilot, so I'm no stranger to the aviation world either. :) Occasionally, we even fly a little private plane to visit friends in San Diego, but haven't much lately on account of all the clouds over there!

  5. Thanks to all of you!

    Jean, this is our absolute favorite. I've used it a number of times when I was short on time with good results. Of course, longer is better, but when pressed for time I don't hesitate to use this one.

    Jean... I'll take the scorching sun for you for a few days!

    Baking Barrister, I hope your dad likes it! Mine does.

    Baking Serendipity, your are more than welcome. Thanks again for your help. My husband is a pilot too! Can't blame you at all for not visiting this yucky weather. My fingers are crossed that we have hit summer!

  6. mmmm, that beef sounds good! And dont sell the weather short here, we have had gray skies for TWO months now... ugh, so glad the sun has decided to come out! Congrats on the award, and thanks for introducing me to another San Diego foodie.

  7. You're welcome! And you are right... other than that nice 5 days in early July it has been 2 months. Ugh!

  8. Ingrid (mother of Bittersweet Baker)October 27, 2010 at 12:06 PM

    My daughter pointed me to your website and your marinade has become our favorite as well. The sweet cumin soy combination is wonderful and we've had it on beef, chicken and salmon already. I am looking to trying out your other recipes!


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