Santa Maria-Style Tri-Tip

Santa Maria Tri-Rip (4) Blog

“Health food may be good for the conscience but Oreos taste a hell of a lot better.”
 Robert Redford, actor/director

A beautiful break from the cold weather last week drove us back out to grill a wonderfully seasoned tri-tip, grill roasted potatoes and baked mushrooms with garlic and lemon, a fresh Italian olive-tomato salad rounded out the meal nicely. What a refreshing cook out day and still plenty of meat leftover for a few sandwiches on French bread, maybe a little steak and eggs as well on the next morning off…

Freaky weather gives us a moment to anticipate spring and warmer days to come, but for now one day at a time and into the cold nights once again for the next several days. Still plenty of opportunity for delicious “schmaltzy” split pea soup which doesn’t photograph well in gloomy dull weather, the quick warming Tisrya clams/curry with jasmine rice for a quick-lunch as well as a bowl of miso clam soup on another day.

Santa Maria-style tri-tip cooked to 125° about 20 minutes grilling time.

Santa Maria Tri-Rip Mushrooms and potatoes

Served with herb and spice seasoned roasted potatoes, garlic and lemon baked onions and Italian olive and tomato salad

Italian Tomato and Cucumber salad 2

Santa Maria Tri Tip

1 tri-tip roast, also known as triangle steak, a bottom sirloin cut (anywhere from 2 1/2 pounds to
4 pounds) look for one well-marbled with fat

Santa Maria Rub (enough for a 4 pound roast)
1 Tbsp Kosher salt
1 Tbsp finely ground black pepper
1 Tbsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp onion powder
1 teaspoon cayenne
1 Tbsp dried oregano
1 teaspoon dry rosemary (or fresh, finely minced)
1/2 teaspoon dry sage

1.  Mix the rub ingredients together in a bowl. Place the roast in a roasting pan or a baking pan with
edges (this will help keep the rub from getting all over the floor). Sprinkle the rub on the meat on all sides, and massage the rub into the meat. Cover and let sit at room temp for an hour.

2.  Prepare your grill for hot direct heat on one side, and indirect heat on the other. (By the way, if you are working with a wood-fired grill, Santa Maria BBQ traditionally uses red oak wood.) Sear the roast on all sides, 3-4 minutes per side. Carefully watch the roast during this process as one side of the roast is typically quite fatty and as the fat heats up it can drip down and cause flare-ups. Keep moving the tri tip away from the flame if flare-ups occur.

3.  Once the tri-tip is seared on all sides, move it away from direct heat and place it fat-side up on the grill rack. If you are using a gas grill with a top rack, I recommend placing the roast on that rack, with an aluminum tray on the bottom rack underneath to catch the fat drippings. If you are grilling on charcoal or wood, you may want to turn the roast over every few minutes, for more even heating. Try to maintain a grill temperature of 250°F to 300°F.

4.  C over the grill and cook until the temperature of the interior of the tri-tip reaches 120°F for a rare roast, 130°F for medium-rare and 140°F for medium. At this point the meat will take anywhere from 20 to 40 minutes to cook, depending on how hot your grill is, how well done you want it, and the size of the cut. Note that the interior temperature will continue to rise at least 5°F after you take the roast off the heat.

5.  Once the roast reaches temperature, remove it and allow it to rest tented with foil for 10 minutes and slice thinly against the grain. I didn’t slice the whole chunk of meat and the next day easily sliced very thin for sandwiches.