A Shelter-At-Home Trip to Spain Featuring the 2015 Epoch Tempranillo

Hi everyone! My name is Lisa Patson, and I am proud to be a Tasting Room Educator at Epoch and a home chef! I am so happy to be sharing this amazing recipe for Smoky Pasilla-and-Citrus Grilled Flank Steak with ya’ll, that pairs absolutely perfectly with Epoch’s 2015 Tempranillo. Please enjoy!

As we continue to shelter-at-home, let’s take a delicious arm-chair traveler’s trip to Spain.  The 2015 Epoch Tempranillo is a beautiful nod to the wines of the Rioja region of Spain, coming in at 99% Tempranillo, 1% Grenache.  The grapes are all from the Willow Creek District, born in limestone and shale-studded hillsides with Southwestern exposures.  Today, we’re pairing our luscious Tempranillo with a Smoky Pasilla and Citrus Grilled Flank steak.  A big bold wine like this will benefit from some decanting, opening up to dried bing cherry, red plum, pipe tobacco and a savory gaminess.  The fruity, smoky pasilla chiles impart a deep flavor to the meat providing the perfect complimentary pairing to this wine.  So fire up the grill and pour a few glasses of this beautiful wine.  We guarantee you can toss the cork goodbye!  ¡Buen Provecho!

Smoky Pasilla-and-Citrus Grilled Flank Steak
  • 6 medium-size dried pasilla de Oaxaca chiles (see note)
  • 1 tbs cumin seeds, toasted
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 3 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 (2 lb) flank steak
  • cilantro
  • warm corn tortillas
  • sliced radishes
  • lime wedges


How to Make It
Step 1

Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high, and add chiles.  Press chiles flat with the back of a spatula, and toast until slightly softened and a shade darker but not black, 10 to 15 seconds per side.  Remove chiles from skillet, and let cool slightly.  Wearing gloves if possible, trim stems; cut chiles open, and remove and discard seeds.  Cut chiles into very small pieces.  Place chile pieces in a small bowl, and add boiling water to cover.  Let soak until soft and rehydrated, 10 to 15 minutes.  Pour through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a bowl; discard liquid.

Step 2

Using a molcajete, pound and grind cumin seeds and peppercorns to a fine powder, about 3 minutes.  Add garlic; pound and grind to a thick paste, about 1 minute.  Add half of the rehydrated chiles and 1 teaspoon salt, and pound until not much of the chiles are visible, about 4 minutes.  Add 1 teaspoon salt and remaining rehydrated chiles, and pound until mixture is a thick, relatively smooth paste, about 4 minutes.  Add orange juice and lime juice, a little at a time, stirring with pestle to combine.  Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.

Step 3

Season both sides of flank steak with remaining 2 teaspoons salt, and place in a shallow dish.  Pour 1/2 cup chile sauce over steak, coating evenly.  Set remaining chile sauce aside.  Cover flank steak, and let stand at room temperature at least 2 hours or up to 4 hours.  (Alternatively, marinate in refrigerator 8 hours. Let steak come to room temperature at least 1 hour before grilling.)

Step 4

Preheat grill to high (450°F to 500°F).  Without brushing off marinade, place steak on oiled grates, and grill, uncovered, until charred and a thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 125°F, 4 to 6 minutes per side.

Step 5

Remove steak from grill, cover with aluminum foil, and let rest 8 to 10 minutes (internal temperature will continue to rise).  Cut steak against the grain into thin strips, and arrange on a serving platter.  Serve steak with tortillas, remaining chile sauce, radishes, cilantro, and lime wedges.

 Make Ahead

Chile paste can be prepared up to 3 days ahead and stored in an airtight container in refrigerator.