Home on the range

July 18, 2011
Author Notes

Nope, not the roaming deer or the antelope...but the buffalo. And this was all because Whole Foods was plum out of beef flank steak. My butcher was able to offer me a bison flank steak, though. He explained how it is sweeter and richer. Pricey? Yes, but it is denser, less fatty, overall healthier and more nutritious with more will eat less and be more satisfied. So, he made the sale. With an untested recipe and a totally new meat, I was going to serve this to my company as the main entree. But I was not a bit worried. I had so many other wonderful dishes from Food52 friends to serve, I'd still be covered if this happened to bomb.I really did cook this at home on my range, too. And as it worked out, everyone loved it. I have made smitten bison eaters out of everyone who tried it. I will be cooking this again. —Sagegreen

  • Serves 6-8
  • 2 pounds bison flank steak, in 2 or 3 pieces (or beef if you can not find bison)
  • kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup brown mustard
  • 1/4 cup minus two tablespoons of creme de cassis
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon, Maker's Mark or other type
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • spray of grapeseed oil
  • 1 red onion, chopped into rings
  • 1 stalk of rhubarb, sliced into 3/4 inch chunks
  • @ 1/2 teaspoons crushed pink and black peppercorns
  • fresh mint sprigs, divided
In This Recipe
  1. In between saran wrap or waxed paper pound the room temperature steak with the smooth side of a meat mallet on one side then the other for about half a minute total...not beating to flatten, more like a pounding massage to tenderize gently. Add some kosher salt to each side. Set aside for 40 minutes. If you refrigerate, just make sure to return the steak to room temperature before cooking.
  2. Whisk the mustard, cassis, vinegar, bourbon and oil together. Muddle in a mint leaf if you like. After the steak has rested, bath it in the marinade in a shallow glass pan. Cover and refrigerate preferably overnight or at least 6 hours. Turn the steak over midway.
  3. Take the steak out, drain off, but reserve, the marinade. Let the steak come to room temperature. Pat the steak dry.
  4. Heat a large heavy frying or braising pan with grapeseed oil (just a spray) to high. Add the onions and rhubarb; cook for a minute, as you stir them around. Then shove them to the perimeter of the pan to make way for the steak. Sear the steak on one side for about three and one half minutes until crusty brown. Turn over and sear the other side for the same amount of time. Add the crushed pepper to the top. If it is cooked to your liking, remove the steak to a platter and let rest for 10 minutes. Cook a little longer otherwise. But you do not want to overcook bison. Scoop out the red onions and add these to the bison.
  5. Reduce the heat to moderate high. Add the marinade to the rhubarb still in the pan. Stir and simmer for about 7 minutes until this thickens.
  6. Slice the steak into thin strips cross grain and serve with the sauce on the side. Garnish with fresh mint sprigs. I suggest serving this with wild rice. Now the buffalo is welcome in my home anytime.
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