(Note: this post was originally published on February 23, 2020. The date above reflects migration to the new platform.)
Coffee: we all love it and drink it. But how often do we eat it?? Coffee's bitter, complex, versatile flavor presents endless possibilities in the kitchen and deserves more of our attention. An easy way to incorporate coffee into your cooking is as a rub for a grilled protein.
This isn't just any old rub though! This one has incredible depth thanks to bitterness from the coffee, vanilla and woody notes from bourbon, and sweetness from maple syrup. It's all complemented with the most luscious bourbon caramelized onions and an incredible coffee, bourbon, maple, and orange reduction glaze.
I think you'll find yourself coming back to these coffee-rubbed steaks again and again because the complexity of the flavors is just so rich and interesting.
I'm very excited to be bringing you this post in partnership with Paradiso Farm to celebrate their Maple Bourbon Barrel Aged Coffee. This coffee is truly a masterpiece, and that really means something coming from a big coffee (and bourbon...) nerd! It has a big, bold flavor that is complemented by a distinctly bourbon-y aroma and a very subtle sweetness. I even detect hints of chocolate in the aroma and taste, especially in the finish. I find it to be nicely balanced and so interesting that I keep wanting to sip it again and again.
Steve and Dovie at Paradiso Farm are my (almost) neighbors. They have a gorgeous small farm in Charlotte, Vermont, where they roast a beautiful line of coffee and even grow their own figs. Their coffee is all thoughtfully sourced and roasted to perfection in small batches right on their farm. But Maple Bourbon Barrel Aged Coffee?? This was new even to me, and incredibly exciting since I adore all three of those things. Here's what Steve from Paradiso Farm says about the process behind this unique coffee:
"We start with a maple bourbon barrel from Saxtons River Distillery in Vermont. We then add our green organic Honduras Comsa Marcala coffee beans into the barrel, and roll the barrel once a day to ensure even distribution of maple bourbon goodness to all of the green beans. Once the beans are properly aged, we take them out of the barrel and roast them to a medium roast profile. The result is a unique roasted coffee with notes of chocolate, maple, and bourbon!"
Now, onto these gorgeous steaks! I've shown tofu steaks here, but you could use this rub (and the onions and glaze, those are important!) for any protein you like. The rub is just Maple Bourbon Barrel Aged Coffee (ground to espresso size), paprika, cinnamon, salt, and pepper. I deliberately kept it simple to really let this beautiful coffee shine! Rub it all over both sides of your protein and you're ready to grill.
But you can't have steaks without some indulgent accompaniments, right? These maple-bourbon caramelized onions are so succulent and delicious, and easy too.
Finally, the glaze. Oh this glaze! My inspiration behind these flavors was my Vermont Old Fashioned cocktail, which unites bourbon, maple, and orange. The glaze contains brewed coffee, bourbon, maple syrup, orange zest, and orange juice, cooked down to create the most indulgent, sticky glaze to brush over your steaks. It has some sweetness from the maple syrup, but also very complex bitterness from the coffee, all kissed with bright citrus. It's divine!
Here's what you'll need for this recipe, as well as some thoughts, tips, and possible substitutions. If you make any substitutions, I'd love to hear about it in the comments section below.
My hint: double the recipe. I wrote it to give you four steaks, but you'll want more! Any leftover steak and onions are incredible on top of a kale salad for the next couple nights. Or perhaps a steak and onion sandwich?? Yes, that would be perfect!
I'm so excited about this recipe, and I hope you all will be too. It's utter steak perfection: a bold, flavorful rub complemented with succulent onions and the most luscious deeply-flavored glaze. So get your hands on a bag of this amazing coffee and make yourself some epic coffee-rubbed steaks!
It makes me so happy to hear from you and see your creations! Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think about this recipe. If you post a photo on Instagram, hashtag #TheRogueBrusselSprout and tag me (@TheRogueBrusselSprout) in the post text so that I'm sure to see it.
Disclosure: I received free product from Paradiso Farm. However, all opinions and thoughts are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep The Rogue Brussel Sprout running.
This rubbed tofu is a flavor powerhouse! The combination of sweet maple, fresh orange, bitter coffee, and fragrant bourbon is pure magic. This is a special meal you'll want to make again and again!
Have a look around at some of my favorite recipes! I can't wait to see what you create.