Summer happiness is a bowl full of freshly picked cherries and a spicy, smoky slightly sweet grilled tri tip. Best served with a bottle of vino tinto, near the water, with your best friends.
Cherry chipotle barbecue sauce is perfect on grilled beef tri tip. It is sweet and just spicy enough with cumin and smoke jalapeño peppers in adobe sauce. I had a tri tip but any grill worthy cut of beef would be delicious; try round steak, london broil, thick flank steak or even smaller cuts of beef steak. A pork tenderloin would be fabulous with this chipotle marinade and sauce. I think chicken would even sing with this sauce.
Adjust the heat to your tastes by using less chipotle and or seeding the peppers.
Don’t skip the smoky adobe sauce. That’s the best part of a canned chipotle. Freeze the remaining chipotle and adobe sauce for another day.
Make-shift cherry pitter, brilliant kitchen hack.
I used a citrus squeezer to pit my cherries. Place 4-5 cherries in the squeezer and compress. Then just pop out the pit. A cherry pitter would also work but I didn’t have one.
Make the cherry chipotle sauce first and marinate the tri tip 6 hours to overnight with part of the cherry sauce and more olive oil.
Make your side dishes in advance so you have time to socialize. Toss a salad together, make Mexican cauliflower rice or cumin quinoa and bake a batch of brownies before your guests arrive.
When your guests arrive have cold cerveza or margaritas available and heat the grill or start the charcoals. Grill your tri tip to medium rare, which will take about 30 minutes and pour on more warmed cherry chipotle sauce before serving.
I served this with cumin quinoa, salad greens with a balsalmic vinaigrette and fresh melon. We drank a bottle of California Zinfandel and barely had room for bourbon brownies for dessert.
Make ahead barbecue side dishes?
Cumin and cilantro quinoa
Rinse quinoa, sauté a little onion, garlic, cilantro chopped, a dash of salt and pepper and a tablespoon of cumin seeds, add broth or water and cook 15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature to rave reviews.
Bourbon Brownies, yes please.
Bake your favorite brownies or a healthy store bought mix. Pour a shot of bourbon over the hot brownies just out of the oven. Delicious and easy.
- Onion 1/2 cup diced
- Olive oil 1/4 cup and 1 tablespoon, divided
- Fresh or frozen cherries pitted and rough chopped, 2 cups
- Orange marmalade 1/2 cup
- Cilantro chopped 1/2 cup
- Chipotle in adobe sauce, 1-2 seeded peppers and 2 teaspoons of adobe sauce
- Cumin seed 2 teaspoons
- Sea salt 1/2 teaspoon
- Beef tri tip 3-4 pounds
- Sauté onion in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil 5 minutes until translucent. Add remaining ingredients through salt and 1/4 cup of water. Bring to a boil. Simmer 15 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
- Combine 1/2 cup of cherry sauce and 1/4 cup of olive oil with the beef. Marinate 3-12 hours in the refrigerator.
- Heat grill to 500 degrees. Remove beef from the marinade and reserve marinade for basting. Discard any remaining sauce after basting. Grill tri tip on high heat for 5 minutes on each side to sear meat. Reduce heat to 400 degrees. Baste tri tip with remaining marinade and grill 8-10 minutes on each side. Remove when medium rare and let rest 10 minutes before serving.
- Rewarm the reserved cherry sauce. Slice beef across the grain and pour cherry chipotle sauce over meat and serve on a platter.
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