These flank steak pinwheels always sell out when we offer them to our customers at the Flint Farmers' Market. Probably because they are so delicious and really easy to cook. Turns out, they are really easy to make too!
The secret to a great flank steak pinwheel is the tenderness of the meat. John Henry's Flank Steak
is a great choice because it is cut from an already very thin, very lean section of the beef. Normally this steak would be best when marinated or slow cooked so that the tightly woven muscle fibers could have time to break down and tenderize the meat from within. For this recipe though, John Henry's has a short-cut to offer. Our butchers will take our Flank Steak and run it through our tenderizing machine which will break up those tight muscle fibers. This leaves the steak thin, pliable and extremely tender. No pounding it down with a mallet, no mess; when you order a tenderized flank steak from John Henry's it will arrive ready to begin this recipe.
Prepare some space to assemble and roll your pinwheel. A large counter top area, a cutting board and parchment paper or tin foil is helpful. Remove your flank steak from the vacuum packaging and unfold/unroll it so it is nice and spread out.
Next, sprinkle on a generous amount your favorite steak rub seasoning. I used Wildtree's Rancher Steak Rub to give it a great peppery flavor! You could also use a simple Sea Salt and Black Pepper combo, or be adventurous and try something new!
Next, you'll want to add a generous layer of cheese.
I'm a little cheese obsessed, and I'm also lactose intolerant, so I chose to use a goat cheese blend and as you can see, I use a generous amount! John Henry's has some delicious cheese options from grass-fed dairy cows. For this recipe, I highly recommend the Dill
or the Onion & Garlic
cheeses, flavored with farm fresh ingredients! At our farmers' market in Flint, MI, we make them using fresh cheese curds from a local vendor. You can use any flavor of cheese, have fun and try different kinds!
The next layer I chose is fresh spinach. Remove any tough stems and spread it out in an even layer all over the cheese. There are many pinwheel recipes that incorporate different combinations of veggies, sauces and things that are fun to try. Here is my finished product, using the simple spinach layer. I felt like I used a TON of spinach but there were no complaints from the kids, so.... maybe next time I'll use more!
Below is one of the pinwheels that was made fresh at our Flint Farmers' Market location, using ingredients exclusively from the market vendors!
The last part of assembly is making the roll. You want to roll against the grain, from the long edge, and keep the roll tight so the cheese and spinach stay tucked inside in nice layers. Use bamboo skewers or toothpicks to pin the edges of the roll into place. You'll be slicing at about 1 inch marks, so try to make sure every piece will have at least one skewer to hold the pinwheel in place. It should look something like this...
If using tin foil or parchment paper, transfer the roll onto a large cutting board at this time. Slice the roll into 1 inch pinwheel medallions making sure that each piece has a skewer pinning it together. Set the pinwheels aside as you cut them. An average flank steak should give you about 6 thick slices or so. I combined the two end pieces and made a seventh little roll; it needed several skewers but still tasted great!
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. On the stove top, preheat an oven safe skillet (cast iron is my go-to) on medium-high heat. Add John Henry's Butter
or cooking oil to the hot pan and arrange the pinwheels in the pan to sear for about 5 minutes or so.
When the pinwheels have seared on the bottom side, turn them over in the pan and put it in the oven for 5-10 minutes. If you cut thinner slices cook for less time, for thicker slices cook for longer time, just keep an eye on them. You want the cheese to have a light crust on the outside edges but not to burn. We also took advantage of the hot oven to roast up some root veggies. We cut them up, coated them with olive oil and sea salt and roasted in the oven for 35-40 minutes.