Though it’s most known in the US paired with chicken, schwarma (or shawarma if you like) is a spice blend you’ll find in all kinds of contexts in the middle east. There are dozens of different formulas for it, but they are typically heady mixes of warming spices – cumin, paprika and cardamom, and often with additions of sumac, coriander, cinnamon, clove, allspice and more. As Chef Molly McGrath uses them here, they’re an equally fantastic match as a marinade for Australian grassfed beef and for vegetables like mushrooms. (ed. note: this spice mix in a marinade or rub for Aussie lamb would be super tasty too!)
“Flank steak makes me think of cooking on open flames, and that’s part of what brought the shawarma inspiration to this dish. Because Australian grassfed flank is such a lean cut of beef, it lends well to being thinly sliced, again reminiscent of shawarma. Finally, because it is so flavorful, it really complements the blend of spices used in a shawarma-inspired mix.”
– Chef Molly McGrath, Head of Culinary, All Day Kitchens
Grilled over open flame and sliced thin, the grassfed flank steak is the star of this build-your-own show, with a complement of pitas, labneh, red onion, and those spiced oyster mushrooms, roasted crispy at the edges. Interactive, sharable, and gorgeous on the plate, there’s a lot to love about this. Add in that it works just as well for takeout and delivery as on-premise – as Molly notes, “As a 1000-year old street food, it’s one of the original “takeout” dishes!” -- AND uses a cut that tends to be easier to find these days in the flank, and we’ve got a scha-winner!
Nice one Chef!