Skirt Steak: Part 1

Skirt steak comes in two varieties: outside and inside.

Outside skirt steak comes from the plate section, below the rib section and between the brisket and flank. It’s said to be the cut of beef that started the fajita craze years ago. It’s got good flavor and tenderness, but it’s very hard to find. Most outside skirt steak is shipped overseas to consumers willing to pay top dollar for it.

Inside skirt steak comes from the flank section. It is thinner and narrower and tougher than outside skirt steak. This is the cut you’ll find at most supermarkets and on restaurant menus.

Inside skirt steak comes as a single, long piece of meat. I cut this skirt into three pieces so it was easier to work with and marinated it in Korean barbecue sauce. If you were making this for fajitas, you’d substitute an appropriate fajita or carne asada marinade.

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I grilled the meat at high temp on my Weber Summit 450 gas grill. All skirt steaks benefit from very intense heat, either on the grill or on cast iron. You want a good crust on the exterior and medium doneness. Any more or less done than medium and the meat is tough and chewy.

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After cooking, cover loosely with foil and let rest for just a couple of minutes before slicing the meat thin across the grain and on the bias.

If you ever see outside skirt steak at the supermarket, give it a try. It’s a real treat! Otherwise, inside skirt steak will have do and makes for a great meal, too!