Bill Lankford's Flank Steak

1 large flank steak
2 tsps. finely ground black pepper
1 large onion

6 oz. vegetable oil
juice of 1 lemon
2 oz. dry sherry or white wine
2 oz. brandy or cognac
1 tbsp. salt
1 1/2 tsps. thyme
1/2 tsp. rosemary
1/2 tsp. marjoram
1 large garlic clove

Score the flank steak, with the knife at a narrow angle, and to a depth of about 1/8 inch. Make the scores about 1/2 inch apart from one end of the steak to the other, then repeat the scoring at an angle so that the scores create a pattern of diamond shapes on the surface of the steak. Repeat on other side, as well. Sprinkle the pepper on both sides of the steak and gently rub the pepper into the scores.

Finely mince the onion and set aside.

Puree the rest of the ingredients in a blender at the highest speed for about half a minute or until the mixture is uniform. Taste the marinade now, and if it is exceedingly tart or bitter, add just enough sugar or honey to remove the bite. The marinade should not, however, be the least bit sweet to taste.

Stir the minced onion into the liquid. (Do not blend)

Pour half of the marinade into a flat vessel, lay the steakon top, then cover the steak with the rest of the marinade.The vessel should be close enough to the size of the steakthat the marinade will completely cover the steak.

Cover the vessel and place in the refrigerator for at least a day, turning the steak once or twice a day and making sure the steak is always immersed in the marinade. Remove the vessel to room temperature in the morning of the day you want to serve it and turn it two or three more times before cooking.

Prepare the hottest of coals and grill the steak 4-6 minutes per side so that the surface is charred. The center of the steak should be medium rare. You should carve the steak across the grain of the meat with the knife at a narrow angle to the chopping block. Carve the steak thinly (1/8 -1/4 inch) and serve hot. Pour the marinade through a strainer and rinse off the onions quickly with hot tap water. Serve the onions as a condiment for the steak.

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