Fire up the broiler to wake up your winter cooking.

By Mary-Frances Heck
January 11, 2021
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London Broil with Rosemary and Thyme
Credit: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Come January, it's easy to get lost in the bubbling comfort of long-braised meats and hearty stews. But on these short, cold days, I like to shake up the monotony of midwinter cooking with the drama of fire. I beat back the winter blues by cranking up my broiler to create golden brown crusts, sizzling char, and crispy bits that can't be won from roasting. Hence my love for London broil. Traditionally prepared with flank steak or top round, this classic is the perfect dish for big-impact weeknight cooking. And whether your broiler is gas or electric, the following approach leads to deliciously charred results.

Averaging about a half inch in thickness, flank steak is an ideal cut of beef for broiling, as it takes on a generous amount of color while maintaining a beautifully rosy, perfectly medium interior. Here, I've marinated the steak in a punchy mix of vinegar and mustard—ingredients you probably have in your pantry right now. Feel free to riff on this basic flavor profile with your favorite vinegar-based barbecue sauce, Italian-style dressing, or soy-ginger marinade—just beware of sugary sauces that can burn quickly under the licking flames.

Get the Recipe: Classic London Broil with Rosemary and Thyme

Most essential to building anticipation (and big, beefy flavor) is a long rest on a bed of woody herbs, which allows the meat to carryover cook while the juices settle. Thinly sliced, there is no easier—or more versatile—way to serve steak in a flash.

1. Marinate Steak


How to Make London Broil
Credit: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Pour marinade over steak in a baking dish or a resealable plastic bag. Marinate steak in refrigerator at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours.

2. Prepare for Broiling


How to Make London Broil
Credit: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Remove steak from marinade; pat dry. Place on a broiler pan; brush both sides of steak with neutral oil.

3. Broil First Side


How to Make London Broil
Credit: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Broil steak 3 to 4 inches from heat source until top is browned, about 5 minutes.

4. Flip Steak


How to Make London Broil
Credit: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Carefully remove pan from oven. Using tongs, flip steak. Return pan to oven.

5. Broil Second Side


How to Make London Broil
Credit: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Continue broiling steak until desired temperature is reached, 2 to 3 minutes for medium-rare. Remove steak from oven.

6. Let Steak Rest


How to Make London Broil
Credit: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Place cooked steak over herbs on platter; loosely cover with aluminum foil, and let rest 10 minutes. Carve against the grain into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange steak slices on bed of herbs on platter. Serve immediately.

London Broil with Rosemary and Thyme
Credit: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen
Get the Recipe: Classic London Broil with Rosemary and Thyme

Broil Like a Chef

Many restaurant kitchens use high- powered broilers (known in the industry as salamanders) to flame-broil steaks and other foods. While your oven’s gas or electric broiler is up to the task for this recipe, an outdoor broiler, like the Cajun Bayou Broiler, will give you pro-level fire- power at home. $730 at cajunfryer.com