Though my hubby is a steak purist, a salt and pepper ONLY man, I happen to love a steak bathed in a fun marinade! Oh, I, too, do very much enjoy a steak with lots of kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper, also, don’t get me wrong. But, there are also times when I’d just like a little more extra flavor, too! A little extra pizzaz, ya know?! And since we love our steaks still “mooing” inside, I decided to try my hand at a dark brown sugar marinade, and my Garlic Balsamic Brown Sugar Steaks were not sharing a single bite good!!
But ok, as I always do, I did let him try one teensy bite. He liked it, but the purist stood his ground. (Almost as stubborn as me!)
But *I* on the other hand – – loved, loved LOVED it! A little sweet, a nice tangy amount of balsamic, and just a little spark of heat in the back! OMG was the flavor ever good! And you could, of course, as that’s the whole point of eating a steak to begin with, still taste the beef!! I was thrilled!
And, as we all know, New York Strips aren’t exactly the “friendliest” as fas a tender goes. So, I figured that these would make for the perfect guinea pig to experiment on! And I’m so very glad that I did!!
First, to get this out of the way, I always use dark brown sugar. And frankly, haven’t bought regular, light brown sugar in probably more than 25 years! I switched to the dark brown for several reasons.
One – – I LOVE molasses! And molasses is what makes “brown sugar” brown! So if there was an option of more? Heck yea! I was all for it!!
Two – – I instantly learned that it didn’t turn into a petrified BRICK once you open the bag!! There’s enough molasses in it that it stays soft! And I never once noticed a difference in my baking as far as the science goes. (No flat cookies or collapsed cakes, etc.!) I did, however, see that everything I made with it seemed to be even better, though! And it quickly became my “secret ingredient”!! So dark brown sugar #FTW!!!! 😀
Steaks almost done!!! Getting VERY close!!!
So along with dark brown sugar, I knew that I definitely wanted a bit of a tang to balance the sweetness, and balsamic vinegar is my go-to vinegar for steak and beef! It’s rich-tasting, aged, and it’s just plain wonderful! And of course, pairs VERY well with sugar and molasses!
The rest was just simply butter and oil to sauté a little fresh-minced garlic in, salt and pepper, the always beef-friendly, steak-loving worcestershire sauce, and just a little bit of heat in the back created by a few dashes and pinches of sriracha, Slap Ya Mama cajun seasoning and cayenne!
Nothing over-the-top really, but wow!! What a nice flavor it created!! It really complimented the steaks beautifully! I was a VERY happy girl, especially since I wasn’t sure how much dark brown sugar a marinade could take without turning into a bitter, charred, burned and inedible mess on the grill!
The amounts I guessed, were, luckily!!, spot on!! Whew!!!!!!
The steak-purist hubs enjoyed his steak “very much” – – but – psssssttt!!! C’mere! I KNOW mine was better!!!!!! 😀 😉 Shhhhhhh!! My secret….and now it’s yours, too!!! 😉 🙂
Grill out before the summer is over!! And enjoy!! 🙂
- 2 Tbl. butter
- 1 Tbl. salad oil such as canola
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- ⅔ cup dark brown sugar, packed
- ⅓ cup sweet aged balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tbl. worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
- ½ tsp. kosher salt
- ½ tsp. sriracha sauce
- ⅛ tsp. cajun seasoning such as Slap Ya Mama
- ⅛ tsp. cayenne
- two thick-cut New York Strip steaks, (beef tenderloins or other tender cuts would work well, too)
- In small sauté pan, melt butter and oil over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute.
- Remove pan from heat, add rest of ingredients and stir until brown sugar has melted. Let cool completely.
- Pour into a ziplock baggie. Close baggie and chill. Add steaks and squish around so that the marinade sauce is coating both well on both sides. Seal baggie closed well, removing air in bag, and pop into the fridge to marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight making sure steaks are not stacked. Turn bag now and then to evenly marinate steaks.
- For rare to medium-rare steaks, heat grill to HIGH, place steaks onto HOT, oiled grates, and grill each side 4 - 6 minutes depending on thickness of steaks with lid OPEN. (*Ours were barely one inch thick and medium-rare after just 5 minutes. So watch carefully).
- Let rest at least 5 minutes before cutting to let the juices settle.
- Really nice served with a simple baked potato, grilled asparagus, and a tossed garden salad with one of my homemade salad dressings! Enjoy!