Step 1: Set up your grill for direct grilling and build a wood or charcoal fire. (Leave part of the grill fire free so you have a place to move the steaks if flare-ups occur.) When it has mostly burned down to embers—a few flames are okay—it’s ready.
Step 2: Make the steak seasoning: Combine the salt, granulated garlic and onion, the ground peppercorns, and the cayenne, if using, in a small bowl.
Step 3: Make the basting mixture: Combine the olive oil, vinegar, and garlic and whisk to emulsify. (Important: Be sure to discard the mixture after using.)
Step 4: Brush and oil the grill grate. Season the steaks with the steak seasoning and arrange on the grill grate directly over the fire. Using tongs, turn the steaks several times, basting each time, until done to your satisfaction (125 to 130 degrees for medium-rare). Let rest for 3 minutes before serving.
Our thanks to the sponsors of Project Smoke Season 3:
Steven Raichlen’s Project Smoke is a production of Maryland Public Television, Barbacoa, Inc., and Resolution Pictures. © 2017 Barbacoa, Inc.