Grilled Flank Steak with Basil Dressing
A potent marinade can boost the flavor of your steak—if you know when to use it.
Why This Recipe Works
For a grilled flank steak with a char-kissed exterior and a perfectly cooked interior, we had to revisit the idea of the marinade. A wet marinade is the enemy of good browning. On top of that, the test kitchen has proven that marinades barely penetrate the surface of meat. But since salt and sugar (when applied far enough in advance) do dissolve and penetrate deep into the meat, we skipped the marinade and simply seasoned our steak with salt, sugar, and pepper. To cook this wedge-shaped cut to the same internal temperature from end to end, we set up our grill with a cooler side and a hotter side. After briefly grilling the entire steak on the hotter side, we positioned the steak so that the thinner portion was over the cooler side of grill to save it from overcooking. And finally, we converted our unused marinade—a vinaigrette of olive oil, basil, lemon, honey, garlic, and pepper—into a sauce that we drizzled over the perfectly grilled steak.