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Tri Tip and Cowboy Beans on the Traeger

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I have cooked many a Tri Tip on my Egg, but decided to see how it turns out on the Traeger. Last time I was in Ocean Side Calif at my nieces home she had me cook a Tri Tip from the Sea Side Market in Cardiff. The meat is  power marinated in a mixture Burgundy wine, olive oil, minced garlic, and a ton of cracked pepper. The locals swear by this stuff to the point they consider it so good it's addictive and they gave the title of Cardiff Crack. I found a recipe on line and marinated my Tri Tip overnight. I don't have a vacuum marinating machine so will see how it turns out straight up. 



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Well after my first Tri Tip on the Traeger, I have nothing but good things to say. The cook was just brainless easy. Set the Traeger at 300 degrees. Stuck a probe into the middle of the thick end, put my cowboy bean pot on a rack and used a little 6" smoke canister that uses pellet for a little more smoke.  I set the target temp at 125, and pulled it between 45 min and an hour. I didn't bother with any kind of sear because I just want to see what it tasted and ate like right out of the Traeger. Bottom line, it was perfect, nice and smokey, perfectly medium rare edge to edge. Whats not to like. The Cardiff Crack marinade IMO worked quite well. If you want the recipe I will happy to post it. I used a board sauce of olive oil, cracked pepper, kosher salt, and fresh chopped cilantro.  The cow boy beans were excellent as well. 






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2 hours ago, ckreef said:

Fantastic cook. Makes me hungry looking at the pictures. 



I think the next time I do this on the Traeger, I'll put a cast iron griddle on the grate and use it to sear the Tri Tip. Although when you slice it thin, you don't really notice the absence of crust. The  untrimmed 4 pack of prime Tri Tip  really cooks up nice. Using the pellet grill is just so darn trouble free. That lille smoke canister really produced a nice flavor on both the meat and the beans which tasted like they came off a camp fire. 

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Cardiff Crack Marinade Recipe


2 cups Red Wine

1/4 cup good olive oil

5 cloves for garlic minced

1 table spoon honey

1 table spoon black pepper

I table spoon kosher salt


I pretty much made up the directions, because they used a power marinade vac machine, and I don't have one. 


I put a little red wine in a small bowl along with the honey and salt and put in in the microwave, then gave it a stir to dissolve them into the wine. I added the small bowl of wine with the dissolved salt and honey to the rest of the ingredients. Put the tri tip into a gallon zip lock and then pour the marinade in over it. I pressed out the air and then massaged the meat inside the bag to complete coat the meat. I set the bag in a glass baking dish and put it in the fridge. I repeated the massage and turned the bag every so often when I thought about it. I let the Tri Tip sit in the marinade for a little more than 24 hrs. When I pulled it out, I did not wash it off, but coated it with olive oil and then added a nice coating of a kosher salt, cracked pepper, garlic rub. I used Jack Daniels #7 Steak.  


I ran the grill at 300, and stuck a probe into the thick end of the Tri Tip. I pulled it at an IT of 125, wrapped it in foil, and put it in a cooler which I had prepped with hot water so the cold cooler would not pull temp from the meat. I wrapped the foiled meat in a couple of towels, dried out the cooler and put the wrapped meat inside for probably 20 minutes to rest. The result was steamy warm, and very moist. A little tip, if you have not done a Tri Tip before, make sure you slice it against the grain. The grain in a Tri Tip runs in different directions in the thick end and the thinner end, they look like the point and the flat in a brisket. A true Tri Tip is bent into a dog leg, and you should cut it in half in the middle of the curve and then slice each of the two pieces separately to make your slice cross grain.  if you look at the pic of my Tri Tip on the cutting board,  you can see this is how I sliced mine. I put a board sauce of my rub, olive oil, kosher salt, and cracked pepper, and dredged each slice in the mixture before plating.  . I paired the Tri Tip with cowboy beans, which in our house is  a mixture of white an pinto beans, with green onion, diced tomato, cilantro, and hatch green chilis. Happy Cooking

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