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Home & Garden

9 Ingredients Every Holiday Spread Needs, According to Tre Wilcox

The local chef gives us the scoop on how to plan your party menu.
By D Home |
Tre Wilcox
Courtesy of Tre Wilcox

Cooking for a group with varying tastes and diets can be a tricky task. Consider your guests before setting a menu, says Chef Tre Wilcox of Tre Wilcox Cooking Concepts. “Knowing what kind of crowd you’re serving gives you an idea of what your food format can be,” he says. For a spread that will accommodate a range of preferences, Wilcox’s formula, below, will serve you well.

  • 2 Proteins: Wilcox recommends a red meat, and either a white meat (fowl, pork, etc.) or a seafood.
  • 3 Carb-Forward SidesThink mashed potatoes and cheese grits. “One or two can still incorporate vegetables, like a butternut squash risotto,” Wilcox says.
  • 2 VegetablesBoth cooked, or one cooked and one salad. If your guest list leans more veggie-friendly, sub out the carb-driven sides for an additional vegetable. In either case, Wilcox says, “Make sure these aren’t super heavy or covered in butter or thick sauces. Let the vegetables shine.”
  • 1 Bread
  • 1 Plated Dessert


Chef Tre Wilcox’s Thai Style Flank Steak

Yields 4 servings

Marinade Ingredients:
1 cup seasoned rice wine vinegar
1 cup canola oil
1  cup soy sauce
1/3 cup lime juice
1/4 cup orange juice
3 each jalapeño, chopped fine, seeds included
3/4 cup chopped garlic, small diced
1 cup yellow onion, small diced
1 cup peeled ginger, small diced
2 teaspoons Chinese five spice, ground
6 each chili de arbol, chopped
5 pounds Prime Flank Steak, trimmed

For the Marinade:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large casserole pan big enough to hold the entire piece of whole flank steak. Place flank steak in marinade, cover and refrigerate overnight, 24 hours preferred. Be sure to flip meat over halfway through marination time.

To Finish the Steak:

  1. Preheat grill to 400–450 degrees.
  2. Remove steak from marinade and shake off large pieces of the marinade.
  3. Place meat onto a paper towel lined sheet pan and allow meat to come to room temp before placing on the grill, about one hour.
  4. Oil grill well before adding meat to it. Cook flank steak 3 minutes on each side, or till cooked to the desired doneness.
  5. Rest for 5–8 minutes before slicing.
  6. Be sure to slice against the grain of steak.

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