Margarita Marinated Skirt Steak with Grilled Tomatillo Salsa

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Yield: 4-6 servings


This margarita-inspired marinade (it includes tequila, Cointreau, and lime juice0 not only add flavor but also helps give the meat an excellent char. Grilling the tomatillos in this salsa mellows their sharp tanginess, making them a perfect foil for the big, beefy flavor of the grilled steak.


For the steak:

2 limes

1/3 cup tequila

1/4 cup canola oil

2 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro

1 Tbs. Cointreau

2 medium cloves garlic, minced

1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

2 lb. skirt steak

Kosher salt

For the salsa:

1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil; more for the grill

1 lb. tomatillos (10 to 15), husked and rinsed

1 medium yellow bell pepper

Kosher salt

1/2 ripe medium avocado, diced

2 Tbs. minced red onion

1 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro

1 jalapeño, seeded and minced

Freshly ground black pepper


Marinate the steak:

Finely grate the zest from 1 lime and put it in a 9×13-inch baking dish. Finely grate 1 tsp. zest from the second lime and set aside for the salsa. Juice the limes. Add 1/4 cup juice to the zest in the baking dish and mix 1 tsp. juice into the zest for the salsa.

To the baking dish, add the tequila, oil, cilantro, Cointreau, garlic, and pepper flakes; whisk to combine. Season the steak all over with 1/2 tsp. salt. Add it to the marinade and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours, turning the steak after 1 hour.

Make the salsa:

Prepare a medium gas or charcoal grill fire. Scrub the grill grate with a wire brush and then wipe clean with a paper towel dipped in oil.

Rub the tomatillos and yellow pepper all over with the 1 Tbs. oil and season with 1/2 tsp. salt. Grill the tomatillos, turning occasionally, until they have good grill marks and are starting to collapse, about 6 minutes. Grill the pepper, turning occasionally, until charred all over, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the tomatillos to a plate and let cool. Put the pepper in a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let sit until cool enough to handle.

Roughly chop the tomatillos and put them in a medium bowl. Peel the skin from the pepper, remove the seeds, and cut into small dice. Add the pepper to the tomatillos along with the avocado, onion, cilantro, jalapeño, and the reserved lime zest and juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Grill the steak:

Remove the steak from the marinade and pat it dry. Clean and oil the grill grates again. Grill the steak, covered, over medium heat until brown grill marks form on one side, about 5 minutes. Flip and cook until medium rare (130°F on an instant-read thermometer), 4 to 5 minutes more. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes. Cut each steak crosswise into 2 or 3 pieces, and then thinly slice across the grain. Serve with the salsa on the side.

Make Ahead Tips

The salsa may be prepared up to 2 hours ahead.