Life in a Northern Town

Beef Kebabs- It's What For Dinner

Lately, we have been on a kebab and grilling bender. I use the grill in the winter but it is infinitely more enjoyable to cook outside when it's warm out. Beef tenderloin was on sale at the grocery store and I put in my basket (the kids love tenderloin). I was on the fence about hacking up a nice piece of beef and skewering it. Well, I am glad I jumped off the fence—it was a delicious idea and a perfectly good use of a beautiful piece of meat.

Allegro is my absolute favorite marinade for beef. We used to buy it at Cub Foods when we were young and broke. It was the cheapest marinade they carried and made tough and cheap pieces of meat loosen up a little.  Somewhere along the line, I decided to get fancy and make my own marinades. I forgot about my old pal, Allegro. Fast forward 17 years, I was at Byerly's and there it was, not quite as cheap but as good as I remember.

Kebabs are one stop shopping for dinner. Everything is fair game as far as I am concerned— parboiled potatoes, tomatoes, mushrooms, zucchini, onions and red peppers. I marinate the vegetables in olive oil, freshly squeezed lemon juice and Montreal Steak Seasoning (another absolute favorite) for an hour or so before skewering them. I keep the grill at about 400 - 450 degrees and grill them for about 10 - 15 minutes. The cooking time may be different if you are using a gas grill or a kettle grill. I have terracotta heat diffusers in my grill and the kebabs are not exposed to direct heat.

I love red blends and this 2008 Chateau de Lascaux from the Pic Saint Loup region was spectacular. I bought it a couple of years ago and forgot it was in the basement. It was the perfect wine for dinner— spicy, tart and lots of lush fruit. Talk about a powerful trifecta— Grenache, Mourvedre and Syrah are beautiful when they are blended. The good folks at Wine Spectator agree with me, it was one of the top 100 wines in 2010.