Sheet Pan

Simple Sicilian-Style Grilled Steak

July 21, 2011
8 Ratings
Photo by Bobbi Lin
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

When I think of the Silician sauce salmoriglio, I typically think grilled fish. But it’s pungent and flavorful enough to stand up to red meat, and it makes a great, quick marinade—perfect for when you haven't planned ahead or just want a good steak fast. For steak, I take a slight detour from traditional versions by adding the zest from the lemon I’ve juiced, fresh thyme (my favorite herb, and one I love with red meat), and red pepper flakes. Be sure to reserve some of the prepared salmoriglio to spoon over your cooked steak. Grilled vegetables make a natural side dish and taste great with the salmoriglio. —EmilyC

Test Kitchen Notes

How could I not love this? Garlic, lemon, red pepper flakes, fresh herbs—salmoriglio was practically made for me. As a marinade, it works beautifully on flank steak, gently flavoring and tenderizing the meat. As a sauce, it's even better. It was a great dipping sauce for asparagus as well as steak. Super easy, with lots of flavor, this is a truly great recipe and one I will use frequently. —drbabs

What You'll Need
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (for making garlic paste) + more, to taste, for marinade
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Juice and zest from 1 lemon
  • 1 1/2 pounds flank, skirt, or hanger steak
  1. To make the salmoriglio, start by smashing together your garlic and salt with the side of your chef's knife, then work your knife back and forth to create a smooth paste. (Alternatively, you can do this step in a mortar and pestle.) In a small bowl, combine the garlic paste, oregano, thyme, and hot pepper flakes. Whisk in the olive oil, then add the lemon juice and zest. (Adding the olive oil first prevents the lemon juice from turning the herbs brown.) Season to taste with salt. Reserve about 1/3 cup of the salmoriglio to serve as a sauce.
  2. To prep your flank steak, remove the steak from the refrigerator and place it on a plate or sheet pan. Rub the remaining salmoriglio evenly over both sides of the steak, making sure to work it in well. Leave to marinate for up to 1 hour. Meanwhile, prep your grill.
  3. To grill your steak and serve, prep your grill for direct cooking over medium-high heat. Brush your grates clean. Grill the steak until cooked to your desired doneness, about 4 to 5 minutes on each side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for about 10 minutes. Thinly slice against the grain. Serve with the reserved salmoriglio on the side. Enjoy!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • The Pontificator
    The Pontificator
  • Jasmin Richie
    Jasmin Richie
  • Leona Shemza
    Leona Shemza
  • ibbeachnana
  • AntoniaJames

Recipe by: EmilyC

I'm a home cook. I love salads. Two things you'll always find in my refrigerator are lemons and butter, and in my pantry good quality chocolate and the makings for chocolate chip cookies.

33 Reviews

Marteenielala July 13, 2020
Excellent recipe! I did not however read recipe very well and marinated overnight. Then I read the comments...but, I'll say the flavour was all there. Only thing was it didn't sear quite as nicely as it could have. I will definitely make this again and follow instructions better. I also made a pasta salad (Coral Lee) and it was amazing with the reserved marinate poured on it. As with other reviewers - love love the marinade!!
Lori E. June 30, 2020
I've been longing for steak. I rarely cook it myself, though--the last time I tried oven roasting at a high heat, it set off all the fire alarms in our place. (But it sure was good.) We live in an apartment, no outside BBQ grill. Can I cook this on the stove or in the oven? Hopefully, without setting off the fire alarms! Thanks.
EmilyC June 30, 2020
Hi Lori — I’d try a grill pan (with your exhaust fan on) or your broiler!
Lori E. July 1, 2020
Thanks, EmilyC! I'm gonna try this.
Kathy May 24, 2019
Can you marinade for longer - say overnight or for several hours?
EmilyC May 25, 2019
Hi Kathy, Several hours is absolutely fine! I hesitate on overnight because of the acid in the marinade.
Glen A. March 3, 2017
I grew up in the mid-west and am an avid griller. Beef ribs, brisket, steaks, hamburgers, pork ribs, chops, and roasts are my standard items. I have never had any Sicilian dishes. I cannot wait to try this one. It sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing.
EmilyC March 3, 2017
You're welcome -- hope you enjoy this!
The P. August 23, 2016
Wondrous dish. Absolutely a keeper.
EmilyC August 24, 2016
Thank you!! : )
Jasmin R. August 23, 2016
Wow, this was so simple to make, yet the flavors came together beautifully! Thanks for sharing. I will definitely keep this high up in the rotation.
EmilyC August 24, 2016
So glad you liked this, Jasmin! Thanks for your note!
jenncc June 1, 2016
Followed this one exactly and it was terrific. Love, love, love the sauce! Made with grilled romaine heads and asparagus. Delicious!
EmilyC June 2, 2016
So great to hear! I love the sauce too -- so much more than the sum of its parts. The romaine and asparagus sound like a great pairing! Thanks for trying this and circling back.
Jenny September 19, 2015
This is a delicious marinade and sauce. I added three anchovies and mashed them with the garlic in place of the salt. I also went half and half on the acid with red wine vinegar. Mmmm! Tastes great spooned over grilled polenta and fresh tomatoes.
Jenny September 21, 2015
Tonight I made it again and used the reserved marinade to dress a tomato panzanella with capers and torn mint leaves. Fantastic.
EmilyC September 22, 2015
YUM! I'm so glad you're finding so many great ways to use the marinade -- and sharing your ideas with all of us! Good call on the anchovies, too! Thanks so much for trying this!
Joeyman9 June 30, 2015
Made this last evening. I was skeptical regarding leman and beef, boy was I silly. This was delicious, the marinade did not over power the flavor of the hanger steak, save some as a sauce as recommended, incredible. Absolutely in our rotation. Emily you did it again. Thank you for sharing!!!!
EmilyC June 30, 2015
So glad this was a hit! I was skeptical about the lemon the first time I tried it too, but it works so well here -- especially with a flavorful cut like hanger. Thanks for your note!
Leona S. June 12, 2015
I made this for dinner tonight - it was a huge hit! Cooked it on the wrought iron skillet served with roasted brussel sprouts & cauliflower and a side of saffron rice. It will be a regular rotation in our home!! Thanks! ( 5 years later, haha!)
EmilyC June 16, 2015
Glad you liked it! Thanks for letting me know!
ibbeachnana July 29, 2011
This sounds fantastic and is on the menu with grilled vegetables tonight, thanks.
EmilyC July 29, 2011
So glad to hear it! Please let me know how it turns out!
AntoniaJames July 28, 2011
So glad this one received EP honors. Congratulations!! ;o)
EmilyC July 28, 2011
You're very kind!
lapadia July 27, 2011
I love the flavors you have used, EmilyC! I am going to try this the next time we grill flank :)
EmilyC July 27, 2011
Thanks so much lapadia! Let me know if you try it!
lapadia July 28, 2011
Congrats on your EP...I knew this one would be there:)
EmilyC July 28, 2011
Thanks lapadia! : )
inpatskitchen July 22, 2011
This one is right up my alley...thanks for sharing!
EmilyC July 22, 2011
Thanks so much! This type of dish is right up my alley, too, especially in the summer months!
AntoniaJames July 22, 2011
Definitely trying this one. It's right up our alley . . . not to mention that we have fresh thyme, oregano and lemons all growing within about ten feet of our grill. I like your suggestion to grill veggies, topped with salmoriglio, too. Thanks so much for posting this!! ;o)
EmilyC July 22, 2011
Thanks, AJ -- it's bound to be a hit with your own herbs and lemons! Please let me know what you think if you try this!