Cooking Tri Tip
Tri tip roast (bottom sirloin) is Tight Line’s Cafe featured “meat of the week”. Maybe it’s just me but tri tip seems to be on sale almost weekly in this part of the country. I say in this part of the country because for some reason it’s not available everywhere. I don’t know why. When I’m traveling east (easy to do when you live in CA), it can be hard to find. In some stores, when I ask for it by name, many in the meat dept. have never heard of a “tri tip”. The name tri tip has been shortened for Triangle roast. It’s also called coulotte steak when it’s sliced. It could be the perfect grill meat. It has a good amount of fat, absorbs a marinade well, and has enough variation in thickness so everyone gets a piece cooked to their liking.
Buy the big package: Here, if you buy the big package (3 or more) the discount can be as much as $2.00 a pound. In the big pack the roasts are usually untrimmed but well worth the savings to trim them yourself. Tri tips average 2 to 3 lbs each so, the big package is a lot of meat. I use tri tip for a lot of dishes. Do you like hamburgers? I have the butcher grind a couple tri tips. Do you like red chili? Have the butcher use the chili plate (coarse grind) for more texture. I like chunks of meat in my red chili so I cut them into small cubes about ¾” square. Tri tips freeze well so if you can’t use what you buy pop them in the freezer.
The Dead Sea: Salt, the number one ingredient in pre-packaged marinated tri tip. Because the cut is so popular here, some of the producers will offer it pre-marinated. Beware the tri tips already soaking in the bag. They can be so salty they are almost inedible. That holds true with many rubs. The first ingredient is salt. Don’t get me wrong, I use salt and think salt is critical to bridging flavor. But too much and the tongue is dead. I soak my tri tip an hour or two before cooking. I trim it, make the marinade, drop it in the juice, and soak it at room temperature until I’m ready to throw it on the fire. Medium to medium high grill, 12-15 minutes a side and it’s cooked medium rare. Oh, the fat end maybe a bit rare and the skinny end a bit medium but from front to back it’s really good. I use the touch method for doneness so know the time guideline is just that.
Marinated Tri Tip
- 1 – Tri Trip 2-3 lbs. Trimmed
- ¼ cup of EVOO
- 3 Tablespoons Tamari sauce
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- 4 cloves of crushed garlic
- Fresh cracked pepper
Mix the ingredients in a large bowl. Trim the visible fat off the meat. Place the trimmed tri tip in the bowl with the marinade and turn with tongs multiple times until the meat is completely covered with the marinade. Marinate at room temperature for 1-2 hours. Grill on medium to medium high for 12 -15 minutes a side. Let rest at least 10 minutes before carving. Serve warm. Grilled vegetables such as zucchini, yellow squash, peppers and onions go well with this cut of meat.
Tips: Be sure to carve tri tip across the grain. Otherwise it can be a bit chewy. Start at the point and make your way to the end. Enjoy!