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Grilled Coffee-Rub Steak

North America has barbecues; in South America, they prefer the more relaxing asado. Prior to the 1900s, the pampa region of Argentina was masked by herds of dense cattle. Horsemen—guachos—would skewer hunks of cow meat using a metal gate-like structure and roast them over small open fires. The prepared meat, asado, became key to the diet of the guachos.

Guachos can be viewed at as the Spanish version of American cowboys; they were very popular and widely admired in public eye. As guachos adopted the tradition of asado-cooking, so too did surrounding villages and cities. Over years, cooking in this simple, meat-grill-fire style became customary in the mellow sense—something to drink wine with and share organic conversation over.

Prep: 10 min | Cooking: 15 min | Total: 25 min


  • Ground coffee beans (2 tbsp)

  • Salt (3 tbsp)

  • Chili powder (3 tbsp)

  • Garlic powder (2 tbsp)

  • Smoked paprika (2 tbsp)

  • Cumin (2 tbsp)

  • Strip steaks (6)

  • Corn starch (4 tbsp)

  • Molasses syrup (3 tbsp)


  1. Clean grill and preheat to high.

  2. In a small bowl, mix together coffee, salt, chili powder, garlic powder, paprika, and cumin. With hands or an appropriate utensil, rub the spice mixture into both sides of each steak.

  3. In the same bowl, mix together corn starch and molasses. Use a butter knife to coat both sides of each steak with the mixture.

  4. Grill steaks for about 7 minutes on each side, more or less based on desired doneness. The rub should be caramelized and innermost parts of steak still red. Serve with potato salad and grilled veggies.

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