Balsamic Vinegar of Modena is among ingredients for a skirt steak recipe.

Chef King's Grilled Skirt Steak with Balsamic Soy Marinade

Culinary Arts Chef-Instructor and Kuma Inn Executive Chef King Phojanakong incorporates Balsamic Vinegar of Modena into an Asian steak dish.

Institute of Culinary Education chefs and experts have been innovating with Italy's Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, and Chef King's approach celebrates fusion and balance in an elevated entree.

Balsamic isn’t an ingredient that you’d typically find in Asian cooking, but I like to play around with ingredients to create unexpected flavor combinations. I chose to use it for flavor in two places in my recipe for balsamic soy skirt steak with balsamic fish sauce onions.

When I’m looking for sweetness in a dish, I don’t always reach for sugar. I like to get creative and substitute other ingredients that will amplify flavor while providing that sweetness, like balsamic. In this case, soy sauce combines with the balsamic in a marinade. The flavors contrast with one another while working well with each other. The balsamic lends an acidity and sweetness while the soy provides saltiness.

You want to use a marinade to help break down tougher proteins like beef or lamb. Let this marinade sit for three to four hours or even overnight to impart its flavors. The longer the steak stays in the marinade, the more flavorful and tender it will be.

We’re going to top this steak with delicious onions glazed in balsamic and fish sauce. The goal is to balance the whole dish with saltiness, sweetness and acidity. In Asian cuisine, it’s very typical to marry these profiles. Caramelizing onions brings out their natural sweetness, and fish sauce adds umami and saltiness to the dish. Using the balsamic adds sweetness and acidity.

I wanted to give this dish my own spin by using Asian ingredients, like fish sauce and palm sugar, combined with an ingredient from Italy to create something unique and delicious.


Grilled Skirt Steak with Balsamic Soy Marinade

Yields 16 oz. serving


  • 16 oz. skirt steak, peeled and cleaned
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 1/2 cup Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


  1. In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients for the marinade.
  2. Place steak in shallow baking dish or resealable plastic bag.
  3. Pour marinade over steak. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or up to 24 hours.
  4. Remove steak from marinade and grill to desired doneness.

Grilled Skirt Steak with Balsamic Soy Marinade

Balsamic Onions, Fish Sauce & Palm Sugar

Yields 1 pint


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 yellow onions, sliced
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
  • 1/4 cup palm sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena


  1. Heat olive oil and butter in sauté pan over medium heat.
  2. Add onions and salt moderately stirring for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.
  3. Add remaining ingredients except for Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena.
  4. Stir for another 5-10 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat and drizzle with Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena.

Learn more about Balsamic Vinegar of Modena and study Culinary Arts with Chef King.

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