Flank Steak Pinwheels

I think I may have spoken too quickly when confessing my undying love for Apple. You see, my Macbook was in for some minor cosmetic repairs. Since the closest Apple Store is about an hour away and I was battling the flu last week, I had to leave it with the Genius Bar for a whole week. A very long week, if you ask me. I was extremely excited when my boyfriend, who is the sweetest guy I know, made the trek to pick it up for me on Saturday morning while I got some much-needed sleep. I was so very ecstatic to have my beloved laptop back that I opened it immediately and began browsing the internet, as I so often do. Then, to my horror, I got some sort of system error which forced me to restart my computer, but then it never came back on. The system crashed and the computer could not or would not reboot.

After a call to the friendly people at the Apple Store, we snatched up the only remaining Genius Bar appointment for that day at 8pm, and, together, we made the long drive back to the Apple store that evening. I will say, in defense of Apple, that every person I have dealt with regarding this issue has been super friendly, but obviously I am beyond frustrated that simple cosmetic repairs have now led to replacing the logic board. I have no idea what that is, but it sounds important… especially since they have confirmed with me more than once that I do in fact have a backup of all my data. They are repairing it for free and even offered to ship it back to me instead of having me drive back out to pick it up, but I am looking at least another week without my computer which I consider a week without my right arm. And I won’t even get into the fact that last time I had a similar cosmetic repair, I ended up having to replace the fan almost immediately as well. I’m starting to lose confidence in these Geniuses.

That said, perhaps it wasn’t the worst of weeks to be without my laptop. As some of you may know, there has been horrible rains and flooding here in the metro Atlanta area. In some areas the damage has been quite catastrophic, and I feel grateful that my loved ones and I have all escaped with minimal damage so far. There has been some flooding in my mom’s basement, and my college campus, less than a mile from my apartment, has flooding in many common areas and at least one of the buildings. Classes have been canceled for the past two days, and I imagine it may be a day or two more before we are able to return to campus. Luckily Ryan and I live on the second floor and have only experienced the inconvenience of living without cable or internet for a couple days. Quite trivial, considering.

So what did I use this unexpected spare time that might have been wasted on the internet or television if those choices had been available? I cooked. I tackled some recipes that were a bit more involved than what I might normally make. The first of which was these Flank Steak Pinwheels. A while back we tried flank steak for the first time in Beer-Soaked Beef. The recipe was not a hit, to say the least, and I went into this new recipe with some trepidation. My hope was that the filling would help give the steak a tender, more appealing texture. Luckily, I was right!

The combination of sun-dried tomatoes, herbed cheese, and spinach was amazing and gave the steak a great flavor. As good as the steak tasted, it sure didn’t look very pretty courtesy of my inability to properly pound or roll meat. I’m not sure if there is some trick to these two steps that I just have yet to figure out, but any time I am to make a “pinwheel”, it turns out really ugly. With this particular recipe, I did not see how it was possible to slice the meat prior to cooking it so I put it on the grill whole. I think I did about 7-8 minutes per side, then sliced the meat and grilled it for about 2-3 more minutes per side. Of course, I like my meat medium-well at the very least, so adjust cooking times to your preference, or follow the directions posted on Eating Well’s site. I don’t think I’ll be serving this dish to guests any time soon, but if I can manage to improve the presentation, it would make a great dish for a dinner party.

Flank Steak Pinwheels
2/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes
1 pound flank steak, trimmed of fat
1 clove garlic, minced
3 wedges Laughing Cow Light Garlic and Herb, or other herbed cheese spread
1 cup baby spinach
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Preheat grill to high.

Drain and chop sun-dried tomatoes.

Meanwhile, place steak between 2 large pieces of plastic wrap. Pound each side of the steak thoroughly with the pointed side of a meat mallet until the steak is an even 1/4-inch thickness.

Rub garlic all over one side of the steak. Spread cheese lengthwise in a 3-inch-wide strip down the middle of the steak. Top with the sun-dried tomatoes and spinach. Starting at one edge of a long side, roll the steak up tightly, tucking in the filling as you go.

Carefully rub salt and pepper all over the outside of the steak roll. Turn the roll so the overlapping edge is on top. Push 8 skewers, evenly spaced, through the roll, close to the overlapping edge to hold the roll together.

Oil the grill rack. Place meat on grill, cooking 7-8 minutes per side.

Remove meat from grill, and slice the roll into 8 equal portions, roughly 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick, with a skewer in each. Lay the slices back on the grill, cooking the pinwheels for 3-4 more minutes per side or until desired level of doneness.

Remove the skewers; let the pinwheels rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Source: Eating Well
8 servings


September 22, 2009. recipes.

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