Ok, I admit it. I root for the bad guys a lot. I’m a Slytherin, through and through. I love Dexter, and Hannibal Lector. (Although, really, who doesn’t?) So The Sisters Brothers, by Patrick DeWitt, is right up my alley. Eli and Charlie Sisters are renowned killers-for-hire, working exclusively these days for a mysterious man called the Commodore. And when I say these days, I mean smack in the middle of the Gold Rush Wild West. Eli, our anti-hero, narrates their latest charge: to track and kill a man in San Francisco. Their journey begins in Oregon, and lacks for no adventure along the way. Whiskey and women feature prominently. As you would gather, there is a lot of hearty, manly food as well. There is one exception, when the hapless Eli decides the ladies would prefer he slim down, and he eats a miserable meal of roasted carrots. So here is my take on campfire food, Sisters style. A whiskey-marinated, coffee-rubbed, bacon-fried steak. With roasted carrots. I cooked mine on the stovetop, but bonus points if you get authentic with an open fire!
The Sisters Steak
4 8 oz sirloin steaks (or any cut, really)
1 200 ml bottle of whiskey
2 Tb brown sugar
4 chopped cloves garlic
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 Tb ground coffee
8 slices bacon
8 carrots, sliced into sticks
1 Tb olive oil
Salt and pepper
Mix the whiskey, sugar, garlic, salt, and pepper in a 9 x 13 pan. Put the steaks in, then turn them over to coat with the marinade. Leave them for 20-40 minutes, depending how much you like the taste of whiskey. Also, preheat the oven to 450 and toss your carrot sticks with the oil and salt.
When they are close to ready, start cooking the bacon in a heavy skillet over medium high heat. You may wish to do this in 2 batches. When the bacon is about 3/4 done, remove it. Sprinkle the coffee over your steaks, adding additional salt if desired. Put them in the pan to cook in the bacon drippings. Put the carrots on a cookie sheet and roast for 15 minutes.
Important! Cook only for 3 1/2 minutes each side! You don’t want to ruin all this work by making jerky! Mom, I am talking to you!
After you have flipped your steaks, place 2 pieces of bacon atop each one. When they are done, let them rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Just about then, the carrots should be ready.
Serve with biscuits and cold beer.