Triple tip, west coast taste

Triple tip, west coast taste

Elusive? maybe. But hardly strange. Tri-tip, sometimes called bottom sirloin or triangle roast, is a back cut of bottom sirloin that has rich flavor and not too much or too little marbling. In fact, they qualify as fat-free according to government guidelines, meaning a 3.5-ounce serving contains less than 10 grams of total fat, 4.5 grams or less of saturated fat and less than 95 milligrams of cholesterol. Each head produces only two tri-tip roasts. By appearance alone, this boneless cut brings to mind baby brisket.

Part of the appeal of the tri-tip is its elongated triangular shape. It starts out fairly thick and wide at one end, then gradually gains girth towards the middle, which can be several inches thick, and then the roasting tapers to a crisp point. When the meat is grilled, the odd shape allows you to serve rare slices from the plump section, and more cooked slices from the end, thus satisfying everyone. But note that the tri-tip is best when grilled and not at the medium or medium-rare stage. The longer you leave a tri-tip over the flame, the tougher and drier these lean cuts will become.

On the other hand, the tri-tip isn’t called a roast for nothing. It lends itself beautifully to sautéing or roasting, and shines brilliantly when prepared in a slow cooker.

Tri-tip comes in slightly different sizes, but usually no more than three pounds or so. But pay attention when you discover a triple tip. Unless you find one that says “hand trimmed,” you’re also buying a thick layer of tallow called a tallow cap that covers one side. This is the side you won’t see facing up in the package. So, pick it up, then try to peek to see how dense that fat is because you don’t want to pay about $9 per pound for extra fat. Some people like to keep all the fat on the meat during grilling so that it sticks to the tri-tip. It sounds great in theory, but the reality isn’t so hot when you consider that all that melted fat easily triggers fifth-alarm bouts.

Tri-tip is a great cut of beef, but I won’t kid you. It’s not a huity tutti filet mignon (it’s more flavorful). It’s not even a fancy rib (much less marbling and fat). It’s a little chewy when grilled, but that doesn’t mean it’s tough – unless you cook it to death. When making sandwiches or just serving grilled or roasted tri-tip, be sure to slice the meat thinly against the grain so you end up with a more tender cut. The goal is a fragrant pile of rosy triplets, not a fat slab.

There may not be much of a chance of bringing down a West Coast interloper for your mighty pork crown, but if you try the tri-tip and handle it with care, you’ll no doubt be glad this tough cut has finally found its way to the South.

Where to find:

These stores offer triple-tip roasting, but call ahead to confirm availability.

Farmers Market on Buford Highway

5600 Buford Highway NE

Doraville, 770-455-0770

New York Butcher Shop

985 Monroe Drive

Atlanta, 404-343-3614

New York Butcher Shop

4969 Roswell Rd

Atlanta, 404-303-0704

Harry’s Whole Foods Market

70 Powers Ferry Rd

Marietta, 770-578-4400


Perfectly grilled tri-tip

6 services

1 2 to 3 pound roasted tri-tip

For the marinade:

1/2 cup olive oil

6 cloves of crushed garlic

1 leek, finely chopped

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Mix ingredients in a heatproof bowl and microwave for 45 seconds on high.

When the marinade has cooled slightly, add:

Juice and peel of 1 whole lemon

Set the marinade aside until it cools completely.

Meanwhile, trim the layer of fat from the tri-tip end.

Place the tri-tip in a large zip-top plastic bag and add the cooled marinade. Squeeze or massage the bag to coat the meat in the marinade, which looks like a cross between a marinade and a marinade. Refrigerate for 6 hours or overnight.

About 45 minutes before you’re ready to grill, take the tri-tip out of the refrigerator to bring it to about room temperature so it cooks evenly.

Remove the meat from the bag and leave as much of the marinade on the meat as possible. Sprinkle the triangular end with salt to taste.


I use a gas grill, which I heat to 500 degrees to get good crispy meat. Cook the tri-tip for 4 or 5 minutes on both sides until you get good browning on each side.

Reduce heat to about 400 degrees, and cook each side for an additional 8-10 minutes. Depending on the size, the tri-tip should be medium rare.

When done, remove the meat from the grill and let it rest for about 10 minutes before carving.

Slice thinly against the grain.

Nutritional information:

Per serving: 313 calories (percentage of calories from fat, 59), 30 grams protein, 2 grams carbohydrates, trace fiber, 20 grams fat (8 grams saturated), 98 milligrams cholesterol, 87 milligrams sodium.

South of the border is torn apart by three parties

Serves 8-10

1 tri-tip roast about 3 pounds, trimmed

For the marinade:

Garlic oil, recipe below:

1/4 cup olive oil

4 garlic cloves, mashed

Combine the oil and garlic in a heatproof cup and heat in the microwave for about 45 seconds on high. Set aside until cool.

2 tablespoons dried oregano

1 finely chopped chipotle pepper in adobo sauce

Mexican lime or key lime juice, about 1 tablespoon

Mix garlic oil with the rest of the ingredients. Place them in a large ziplock bag and add the tri-tip. Massage the bag until the roast is completely coated with the marinade paste.

Refrigerate overnight or for at least 6 hours.

Note: Remove the marinated tri-tip from the refrigerator about 45 minutes before cooking.

As for the triple tip:

1 large yellow onion, cut into thin slices

4 bay leaves

2 hot poblano peppers, grilled over an open fire until completely charred, then cut into cubes

5 cloves of garlic, crushed and lightly browned in 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Be careful not to burn the garlic.

1 14.5 oz can tomatoes, roasted and diced

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Place the sliced ​​onions and bay leaves in the bottom of the slow cooker.

Combine the rest of the ingredients in a small bowl. Sit aside.

Place the tri-tip and marinade over the onions and bay leaves. Pour the tomato mixture over the grill. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for about 8 hours. The tri-tip should be easy to tear off when finished.

Perfect for burritos or tacos. The grated triangular end can be wrapped tightly in plastic and frozen.

Nutritional information:

Per serving, based on 8: 378 calories (percentage of calories from fat, 63), 33 grams protein, 1 gram carbohydrate, 1 gram fiber, 26 grams fat (9 grams saturated), 111 milligrams cholesterol, 109 milligrams sodium.

Garbanzo Beans Basque Style

Serves 12

Santa Maria’s tri-tip barbecue traditionally includes pinquito beans, native to the region. But these delicious Basque-style beans make the perfect side dish.

1 pound dried beans, cleaned and soaked in water overnight

A few pieces of Trader Joe’s Applewood Smoked Bacon, 5 slices of thick-cut bacon, a smoked turkey wing or a smoked ham hock

4 large onions, cut into thin rings

1 green pepper, cut into cubes

4 garlic cloves, chopped or mashed

1 teaspoon smoked paprika (I like hot, but you can use sweet if you prefer).

1 tablespoon dried and ground oregano

4 or 5 whole bay leaves

1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes

1 teaspoon sugar

A splash of Worcestershire sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

Water or stock

Place a large Dutch oven over medium heat, and add the bacon or other smoked meats suggested. If you are not using bacon, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the pan. Stir-fry the bacon until it’s crispy. If you are using bacon bits, a pork shank, or a smoked turkey wing, stir them in the hot oil for a few minutes until the meat is slightly browned.

Reduce the heat, add the shallots and sweet pepper, and stir until the vegetables are tender. Add more olive oil if the pan is too dry.

Add the garlic, smoked paprika, oregano, and bay leaves, and stir for a minute or so, but make sure not to burn the garlic.

Increase the heat to medium-high and add the tomatoes, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen any chunks. Add a can of water or broth, and let the mixture boil for a few minutes.

Add sugar and Worcestershire sauce, add beans and stir. Now add 4 cans of water or broth.

Add about 1 teaspoon salt and pepper. You can use more salt later when the beans are cooked and you taste the seasoning.

Leave the mixture until it boils, then cover it, then reduce the heat until it simmers. Cook covered over low heat for about three hours. Stir occasionally.

After about three hours, remove the lid, turn up the heat and let the chickpeas simmer until much of the liquid has evaporated and they have thickened slightly.

Nutritional information:

Per serving: 144 calories (percentage of calories from fat, 4), 9 grams protein, 27 grams carbohydrates, 8 grams fiber, 1 gram fat (percentage saturated fat), no cholesterol, 81 milligrams sodium.

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