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New BBQ! (May 10, 2004)


Oh, spring... not a moment too soon, either. We've started working on the garden, getting it cleaned up and planted; the outdoor furniture is waiting for visitors, and the grill is gassed and ready to roll.

So we opened our favourite tome on the subject, Weber's Big Book of Grilling, right to the perfect recipe, Buffalo Strip Steaks... with, it says here, lusty red wine sauce. Perfect! We'll pair this rich dish with their Warm Beet and Onion Salad and think that you'll want to add your favourite mashed potatoes or wild rice for a swell side dish. Oh, snort, why resist; we've been working hard all day, and there is still a little chocolate mousse left in the fridge.

We've earned this reward, and the garden looks terrific! Now if I can just talk Ron into getting that darling new Weber Q grill; it'll be perfect in our little vest pocket outdoors...

But meanwhile, darling... open the wine, please!

On today's menu:

Download these recipes in printable form as an Adobe Acrobat PDF (59 KB)


Buffalo Strip Steaks with Lusty Red Wine Sauce

Cookbook authors Jamie Purviance and Sandra McRae say this is definitely a dish for chest-pounders! But remember not to be too ham-fisted while grilling; buffalo steaks have less marbling than beef, so it's easy to overcook. We really enjoy buffalo occasionally; the meat is rich and not too gamey, and a perfect match with important red wines! Snort indeed!

P.S.: Buffalo is available these days at good specialty butcher shops and some upmarket grocery meat departments.

Serves 4

Direct/High heat

    For the sauce:
  • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped yellow onion
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped carrots
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped celery
  • 5 medium garlic clove, coarsely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 buffalo strip steaks, about 1 inch thick each
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper

To make the sauce: In a large saucepan over high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion, carrots, and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 2 minutes more. Reduce heat to medium; add the tomato paste, and cook, stirring often, for about 2 minutes more. Add the broth wine, vinegar, thyme, bay leaves and pepper. Simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Strain the sauce through a fine sieve into a medium saucepan, pressing down on the solids with the back of a spoon. Continue to simmer until about ½ cup liquid remains, about 45 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from the heat.

Rush or spray both sides of the steaks with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill over Direct High heat until the steaks are medium rare, 6 to 7 minutes, turning once halfway through grilling time. Remove from the grill and allow to rest for 1 to 2 minutes before slicing. Serve warm with the sauce.

Accompanying wine? Tony recommends...
a gutsy, full-bodied red – California Zinfandel, Amarone, Australian Shiraz.


Warm Beet and Onion Salad

You are going to get passionate about this colourful salad! Grilling intensifies the sweetness and flavour of beets for a result you just can't get from a can. If the beet tops are tender and unblemished, use them as part of the greens in the salad. Otherwise, use three romaine hearts. If you can't find golden beets, all red beets will do. Great served as a light lunch or first course to a special dinner.

Serves 4

Indirect heat on medium

  • 2 medium golden beets with leafy tops, about 2½ inches in diameter each
  • 2 medium red beets with leafy tops, about 2½ inches in diameter each
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
    For the dressing:
  • 1 medium orange
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp finely sliced fresh basil
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large red onion, cut into four ½-inch slices
  • 2 hearts romaine lettuce

Trim the leafy tops from the beets, leaving about ½ inch attached; reserve the tops. Leave the root ends intact. Scrub the beets under cold water. Lightly spray or brush with olive oil. Grill over Indirect Medium heat until tender when pieced with the tip of a knife, 1 to ½ hours depending on size, turning once halfway through grilling time. Remove from the grill and allow to stand until cool enough to handle.

Trim the ends from the beets and discard. Rub off the skins. Cut the beets into ¼ to ½ inch slices and place the red beets and the golden beets in separate bowls (to keep the red beets from dying the golden beets red).

To make the dressing: Wash and dry the orange. With a zester, scrape off 1 Tbsp of zest. Alternatively, use a vegetable peeler to remove enough strips of zest to total 1 Tbsp when fine chopped. Reserve the zest.

Cut the remaining skin and white pith from the orange and, working over a separate medium bowl, separate the orange into sections, letting the sections and any juice fall into the bowls. Add the reserved zest and the remaining dressing ingredients to the orange sections, including pepper to taste. Gently stir to combine.

Lightly brush the onion slices with some of the dressing and grill over Direct Medium heat until tender, 10 to 12 minutes, turning once halfway through grilling time. Remove from the grill and allow to cool slightly, then separate into rings.

Rinse the reserved leafy tops of the beets under cold water. Select the smallest, most tender leaves and place with the romaine lettuce in a large bowl. Add half of the dressing and toss. Divide the lettuce mixture among four salad plates. Top with the beets and the onion rings and drizzle on the remaining dressing. Serve warm or at room temperature.


We wish to thank Theresa Stahl, Weber-Stephen Products Co. Public Relations Director Canada, for her help and assistance.

We also wish to thank Chronicle Rooks, San Francisco, and Raincoast Books, Vancouver for permission to publish material and photographs from Weber's Big Book of Grilling, by Jamie Purviance and Sandra McRae. Photographs by Tim Turner. © 2001 Weber-Stephen Products Co.


Happily tested by Helen Hatton and Ron Morris.

Download these recipes in printable form as an Adobe Acrobat PDF (59 KB)




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