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Barbecue Secrets

Recipe of the Week: Spice-Crusted Pork Blade Steaks

Jun 10, 2011

Makes 6 servings


I developed this recipe for the folks at Food & Wine magazine for their 2005 summer barbecue issue. I love pork blade steaks because they’re inexpensive, extremely tasty, and very hard to ruin. The cumin seeds add an earthy tang and interesting texture to these rich, flavorful, chewy steaks. Serve them with your favorite summer sides (I like grilled asparagus and cherry tomatoes).


For the rub:

2 Tbsp | 25 mL powdered ancho chiles

(if you can’t find ground anchos, any chili powder will do)

1 Tbsp | 15 mL granulated garlic

1 Tbsp | 15 mL granulated onion

1 tsp | 5 mL freshly ground black pepper

1 tsp | 5 mL ground chipotles (substitute cayenne pepper if you can’t find ground chipotles)

1 tsp | 5 mL dried oregano

1 tsp | 5 mL dried parsley


For the steaks:

6 pork blade steaks (8 to 10 oz | 225 to 300 g each)

kosher salt

2 Tbsp | 25 mL Dijon mustard (regular prepared mustard will also do)

1 Tbsp | 15 mL cumin seeds

extra virgin olive oil


Combine the rub ingredients in a small bowl and set the rub aside.

            Toast the cumin seeds in a dry sauté pan over medium heat until they’re fragrant and just starting to turn light brown. Remove the cumin from the pan and set it aside.

            Generously season the blade steaks with salt. Using the back of a spoon or a basting brush, coat the steaks with a thin layer of mustard. Sprinkle the cumin seeds on both sides of the steaks and pat them in so they stick to the mustard. Sprinkle a generous coating of rub on the steaks and drizzle them with a little olive oil. (You’ll have rub left over, which is great for grilling just about anything.)

            Prepare your grill for high direct heat. Place the steaks on the cooking grate, close the grill, and immediately reduce the heat to medium.

            Cook the steaks for 8–10 minutes, turning them once or twice, or until they are springy to the touch. Remove the steaks from the grill, tent them with foil, and let them rest for 5 minutes. Drizzle them with a little olive oil and serve.

            WARNING: These steaks have a lot of juice and fat in them, so be on the alert for flare-ups.