NY Strip Steaks with Coffee-Peppercorn Marinade; Bacon & Caramelized-Onion Asparagus

For a while now, James and I have been on the hunt for a really good steak marinade. We’ve come across some good ones, and some pretty good ones, but we wanted a wow really good one. I searched on the Food Network for some recipes and found a marinade that was meant to use for flank steak, but I used for NY Strips instead. I also found a great deal on fresh asparagus at Kroger ($0.94 per pound!!) so I wanted to try something new with that. I decided to try a recipe that was in the most recent Kraft Food and Family magazine, tweaking it a little. Here are the recipes:

Coffee-Peppercorn Steak Marinade:

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons strong brewed coffee
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns, crushed
1/2 teaspoon salt

Method:
Mix all ingredients and pour into a dish that your steaks can lay flat in. I put a little bit of Tony’s (not much) on the outside of my steaks, then placed them in the dish, covered and marinated in the refrigerator for a few hours, turning occassionally. Cook with whatever your desired method is to your preferred level of “done.”


Ingredients for the steak & marinade


Steaks sizzling!

Marinade Verdict: This is hands down the best steak marinade I have ever had the pleasure of having on my steak. Our search has now ended and this will be the only marinade we ever use, ever again! It’s just fabulous! I was worried it would be too sweet but it was not at all! We both LOVED it!

Now for the…

Bacon & Caramelized-Onion Asparagus

Ingredients:
4 slices bacon
1.5 lb. fresh asparagus spears, trimmed
water
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup (good) ranch dressing (I used the creamy ranch in jars in the produce section)
NO MORE THAN 1/4 tsp liquid crab boil (don’t put too much or you will have to move out of your house!!)

Method:

Cook bacon in nonstick skillet 3-5 minutes or until crisp, turning frequently. Drain bacon on paper towels. Place asparagus in a microwave-safe casserole, add water until all asparagus is in water. Add tiny amount of crab boil. Microwave on HIGH 6 minutes or until asparagus is crisp-tender. Meanwhile, add onions to skillet, cook and stir until tender. Stir in dressing.

Drain asparagus, top with sauce and crumbled bacon.


The ingredients for the asparagus


All Done!

Asparagus Verdict: Fantastic!!! My first bite I was a little unsure about and felt it could use a little salt. So I added some. From then on, we were both practically licking our plates! The sauce was so delicious and the asparagus were the perfect crisp! I have another bunch in the fridge and you best believe I’ll be making it this way again!


Everything ready to eat (potatoes were instant, roasted garlic flavor!)

Do yourself a favor and make this soon!! ~C.

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