May 8
2011

Grilled Tri-Tip Steak with Molasses Chili Marinade Recipe

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Grilled Tri-Tip Steak with Molasses Chili Marinade Recipe

As the rain drenched our garden beds and lawn on Mother’s Day afternoon, all we wanted was to be nestled inside together, but the dinner hour was looming. Earlier in the day, we prepared a marinade for the tri-tip steaks we bought the day before and we were determined to grill them, despite the falling cats and dogs. My husband, determined that I should lift a minimal number of fingers on Mother’s Day, braved the weather for the sake of a well-cooked steak. Now that is what I call dedication.

The marinade is rich with the flavors of molasses, soy sauce, ginger, garlic and chili powder. Truthfully, it would make dirt taste good, but I recommend trying it with steak, chicken thighs or pork tenderloin. Once the steaks are grilled, the reserved marinade and juices from the cooked steak are boiled into a sweet and savory thickened sauce that can be drizzled over the meat upon serving.

Tri-tip steaks are particularly popular in California, but the reputation of this tender and flavorful cut is gradually spreading eastward. It is a small triangle that is cut from the bottom sirloin and is similar to, or can be found under the name of triangle, Santa Maria, Newport or culotte steak. If none of these are available, flank steak can be substituted.

The recipe:

In a large glass bowl or container, whisk together brown sugar, molasses, soy sauce, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger and chili powder until the sugar is dissolved.

MarinatedTriTip1

Place tri-tip steaks in the marinade and turn until completely coated. Let marinate for about 1 hour, covered, turning the steak occasionally.

MarinatedTriTip2

Preheat grill to medium-high heat and brush with canola oil.

Place the steaks on the grill (do not discard the marinade) and cook until desired degree of doneness is reached, about 5 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the steaks. Remove steak from the grill and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.

Transfer the marinade and any juices collected from the cooked steaks to a small saucepan. Bring to a low boil and let cook for about 10 minutes. Serve with the steak.

MarinatedTriTipLS

Other grilled steak recipes:

Cookin’ Canuck’s Grilled Flank Steak Salad with Chimichurri Dressing
Cookin’ Canuck’s Soy-Ginger Marinated Flank Steak
Guilty Kitchen’s Skirt Steak Fajitas
Eclectic Recipes’ Margarita Marinated Grilled Steak
For the Love of Cooking’s Grilled Steak with Avocado Sauce

Grilled Tri-Tip Steak with Molasses Chili Marinade Recipe
 
From the kitchen of Cookin Canuck. www.cookincanuck.com
Serves: Serves 4
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1 tbsp peeled and chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 lbs tri-tip steaks
Instructions
  1. In a large glass bowl or container, whisk together brown sugar, molasses, soy sauce, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger, chili powder and freshly ground black pepper until the sugar is dissolved.
  2. Place tri-tip steaks in the marinade and turn until completely coated. Let marinate for about 1 hour, covered, turning the steak occasionally.
  3. Preheat grill to medium-high heat and brush with canola oil.
  4. Place the steaks on the grill (do not discard the marinade) and cook until desired degree of doneness is reached, about 5 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the steaks. Remove steak from the grill and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.
  5. Transfer the marinade and any juices collected from the cooked steaks to a small saucepan. Bring to a low boil and let cook for about 10 minutes. Serve with the steak.

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{ 80 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) May 9, 2011 at 4:52 am

the marinade sounds delish!

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2 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 8:15 am

Thanks, Averie.

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3 bellini May 9, 2011 at 5:47 am

Tri tip is so tender and juicey. I have never found individual ones but (more like a flank) but I will definitely keep my eyes open.

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4 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 8:16 am

You could use a tri-tip roast and cut it into steak-sized pieces, or use a flank steak.

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5 Pretend Chef May 9, 2011 at 6:58 am

This is a great marinade recipe to have as a stand in for the standard Italian dressing. I am craving a juicy steak now. Yummy!

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6 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 8:17 am

Most of the marinades I use involve soy sauce and rice vinegar, but I have to say that this is my favorite of all the ones I’ve tried.

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7 Niki May 9, 2011 at 7:18 am

that looks awesome. this makes postponing the trip to the market worthwhile! thanks for sharing.

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8 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 8:17 am

Thanks, Niki.

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9 Maegan May 9, 2011 at 7:31 am

I cannot wait to try this!

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10 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 8:18 am

Thank you, Maegan. I hope you enjoy it.

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11 Mushrooms Canada May 9, 2011 at 7:44 am

YUM! Such a flavourful marinade! I was tempted to use my new BBQ this weekend, but ended up not having any time… or meat for that matter! I will have to try this once I have some steak on hand!
– Brittany

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12 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 8:18 am

Have fun with that new barbecue. It sounds as though you’ve got a great grilling season in front of you.

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13 Rachel @ Baked by Rachel May 9, 2011 at 7:59 am

I haven’t had steak in far too long. I think I need to fix that :) And I absolutely love that this calls for so much garlic mmm mmm!

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14 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 8:18 am

We don’t have steak very often but always appreciate the flavor when we do.

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15 Sommer@ASpicyPerspective May 9, 2011 at 8:10 am

Oh my goodness, if only I could reach out and grab it! There’s nothing quite like a well-cooked steak, and I bet the ginger gives it a good kick.

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16 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 8:19 am

Thanks, Sommer. Yes, the ginger really does add a great flavor to this marinade.

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17 Maria May 9, 2011 at 8:41 am

Love the marinade!

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18 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 11:13 am

Thanks, Maria.

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19 averagebetty May 9, 2011 at 9:25 am

We had a cool, rainy Mother’s Day (down in San Diego) too… I can imagine that marinade would make dirt taste good! Beautiful!

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20 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 11:13 am

Thanks, Sara. This marinade has become our new favorite and it’s good on almost anything.

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21 Jenny Flake May 9, 2011 at 10:10 am

Wow, sign me up Dara, this looks finger licking good! Have a great Monday :)

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22 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 11:14 am

Thanks, Jenny. Believe me, we were indeed licking our fingers.

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23 The Texas Peach May 9, 2011 at 10:28 am

Too bad it had to rain on your Mother’s Day. The marinade sounds absolutely delicious, and the steak looks very tasty!

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24 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 11:14 am

I didn’t actually mind the rain too much. It allowed us to snuggle inside together.

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25 Amy | She Wears Many Hats May 9, 2011 at 11:01 am

This looks drool inducing… I want some now!

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26 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 11:14 am

Thanks, Amy. I’m looking forward to eating the leftovers for lunch.

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27 HeatherChristo May 9, 2011 at 11:02 am

The glaze that marinade gives the steak is gorgeous!

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28 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 11:15 am

Thanks, Heather. It really does give a beautiful look to the steaks (tastes even better).

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29 Heather at FarmgirlGourmet May 9, 2011 at 11:05 am

Looks fabulous Dara!! So amazing. Definitely printing this one out!! Thank you for the sweet comment over on my blog. You rock! :)

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30 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 11:15 am

And I always appreciate your comments, Heather.

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31 Tricia B May 9, 2011 at 11:09 am

Love the molasses idea. I bet it is tasty. Do you dry the steaks off before adding the canola oil? This sounds wonderful. Thanks

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32 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) May 9, 2011 at 11:16 am

Tricia, the canola oil actually gets brushed on the grill, not on the steaks. So, there is no need to dry off the steaks (you want that marinade on there).

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33 Nichol May 9, 2011 at 11:13 am

I love new marinade recipes. This sounds perfect for summer grilling!

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34 Mike May 9, 2011 at 11:14 am

Wish I’d seen this before I grilled yesterday! That photo is great.

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35 Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. May 9, 2011 at 11:42 am

I am making this one for sure. My kids love steak, and this marinade sound SO good! Happy belated Mother’s Day!

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36 Deborah May 9, 2011 at 11:43 am

This sounds amazing!!

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37 Sukaina May 9, 2011 at 11:50 am

Dara….when I saw the first photo, it reminded me of the Mongolian beef I eat at PF Changs…..I’m definately trying this at home! And lucky you that you didn’t have to lift a finger on Mother’s day- wish that happened everyday hey!

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38 Laura @ Family Spice May 9, 2011 at 11:54 am

We live in San Diego and my family loves tri-tip! I’m always looking for new ways to prepare it, too! It’s a fabulous cut of meat, very flavorful and easy in the oven or grill. Hope you had a great Mother’s Day!

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39 Cathy/ShowFoodChef May 9, 2011 at 12:20 pm

Good Gosh that looks good! I can almost taste that perfectly grilled steak with that sweet, sticky marinade sauce – I blame you for making me go back to the store just for a Tri-tip roast.

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40 EatLiveRun May 9, 2011 at 1:06 pm

molasses chili marinade sounds beyond delicious!

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41 Squash Blossom Babies May 9, 2011 at 1:16 pm

Oh, this looks tasty!!! :) I want it for dinner tonight!

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42 Tracey May 9, 2011 at 2:02 pm

Your marinade sounds phenomenal Dara! We only eat steak in the summer when we can grill it, and I’m excited to try this one.

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43 Mary @ Delightful Bitefuls May 9, 2011 at 3:28 pm

This looks so juicy! My hubby will love this! Bookmarked!

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44 Kalynskitchen May 9, 2011 at 3:44 pm

I just bought some tri-tip at Costco, love it. Your marinade sounds great.

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45 Kathy - Panini Happy May 9, 2011 at 4:52 pm

“…it would make dirt taste good.” Well, that sounds like a marinade I need to try! The steak looks gorgeous. Hope you had a nice Mother’s Day!

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46 foodwanderings May 9, 2011 at 5:39 pm

Dara, This is such a fantastic recipe. My son is coming back from college this week and boy he would love this. Great recipe, love the photos as always. That potato dice, gorgeous!!

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47 Cathy May 9, 2011 at 6:44 pm

I made Tri-Tip, too–I love it! Costco is about the only place I’ve seen it here in Minnesota. Your marinade looks to die for…:)

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48 Michelle @ Brown Eyed Baker May 9, 2011 at 7:01 pm

YUM! That marinades sounds delicious!!

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49 Pretty. Good. Food. May 9, 2011 at 7:02 pm

That marinade sounds ridiculously good!

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50 Marla May 9, 2011 at 10:23 pm

This tri tip sounds wonderful – what I like even more is that your hubs braved the cats and dogs to make sure it came out just right! Glad to read you ha a happy Mother’s Day! xo

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51 Miss @ Miss in the Kitchen May 10, 2011 at 3:17 am

We have steak often and I will have to try this marinade, it looks like it really coats the meat and I think it would taste fantastic.

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52 Linda May 10, 2011 at 7:44 am

This may truly become my summer favorite marinade! Looks absolutely delicious! Sweet, sticky and flavorful! yumm!

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53 Belinda @zomppa May 10, 2011 at 8:53 am

As if the steak wasn’t enough, that marinade sounds like ultimate perfection.

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54 Lucy May 10, 2011 at 10:32 am

I love soy sauce and garlic in a marinade, and this one sounds delicious. Will definitely try it on flank steak.

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55 Tracy May 10, 2011 at 11:05 am

You know, I have never grilled steak before but you make it sound easy, and delicious!

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56 Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking May 10, 2011 at 11:07 am

Ooo, I love the sound of a molasses and chili marinade! Sounds – and looks – too good for words. Thanks for sharing and making me crave a big hunk of meat at 10AM, haha! :) I’ll be pocketing this recipe for sometime this summer.

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57 Lana @ Never Enough Thyme May 10, 2011 at 1:33 pm

Delicious marinade, Dara! You’re so right, that combination of flavors would be great on so many things. Hope your Mother’s Day was fabulous.

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58 Becky at VintageMixer May 10, 2011 at 2:02 pm

What a beautiful piece of meat!! This would melt any guys heart I bet.

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59 Lea Ann May 10, 2011 at 4:51 pm

I think this sounds WONderful. And the best part? I’ve got every single item on hand to make it. Thanks for the recipe Dara.

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60 Nithu May 10, 2011 at 5:10 pm

That’s wonderful dish.

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61 Rebecca @ How the Cookies Crumble May 10, 2011 at 5:57 pm

Wow! Mouth. Watering. Now. This looks amazing!!

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62 The Newlywed Chefs May 10, 2011 at 9:50 pm

Looks delicious- and what a great picture! Love this blog, keep up the great work!

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63 Katrina May 10, 2011 at 9:54 pm

Great dinner idea!

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64 Kevin (Closet Cooking) May 10, 2011 at 11:58 pm

That is one tasty looking steak!

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65 Lora May 11, 2011 at 1:43 am

What a mouth watering marinade!

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66 Megan May 11, 2011 at 8:58 am

We eat tri tip a lot here and I’ll have to try this great sounding marinade. Your steak looks fabulous.

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67 Culinary Escapade May 11, 2011 at 1:31 pm

That marinade sounds so good. A definite must try.

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68 Chelsea May 11, 2011 at 2:25 pm

Yum! Can’t wait to try it. Thanks for sharing.

http://www.sothisisarmylife.blogspot.com

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69 Claire May 12, 2011 at 12:49 pm

nom. This looks amazing. I must make this, another easy husband approved dish!

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70 Darla @ Bakingdom May 13, 2011 at 9:26 am

Making this for dinner this weekend and I. Can’t. Wait! Thank you for another fantastic recipe!!

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71 Sook May 15, 2011 at 1:04 am

I had a very similar recipe for Mother’s day, too! It was a Korean bulgogi recipe and it called for molasses too! I am native Korean and had never used molasses in the marinade but it turned out very well! Your steak looks fabulous.

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72 Cookbook Queen May 15, 2011 at 6:57 pm

Looks amazing like always!! Love tri tip!!

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73 Cassie Sue May 16, 2011 at 10:09 am

I made this recipe this weekend and it turned out fantastic. We used pork chops, and I think the only change I’d make is to let it marinate a little longer. The flavor was fantastic and couldn’t be easier! Thanks for the recipe!!

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74 Stephanie July 11, 2011 at 6:35 am

I made it this weekend! No one sells the tri tip in my area (middle GA) so I used a couple of top sirloin steaks instead. I marinated them overnight and threw them on the grill….DELICIOUS!! The ginger really helped set it off! Thanks for sharing!!

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75 G6580 August 13, 2011 at 10:53 am

This was a perfect recipe. Made a wonderful patio dinner and set the mood for me to propose to my girlfriend. She said yes! Thanks for the amazing recipe.

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76 Karen Pugh May 20, 2012 at 1:03 pm

OOOOOOH! This looks so good. We have children and grandchildren in California, so when we are lucky enough to get out that way, they always make sure we get tri-tip. We are in Florida and once in a great while we will stumble across it in the market, but it isn’t quite the same, they have trimmed it down till there is not much left of it, but this marinade will allow us to make sure it isn’t dry and very flavorful.
I am heading to the market now….wish me luck.

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77 Tanya May 28, 2012 at 9:20 pm

This marinade was so flavorful! I substituted petite beef sirloin steaks because they were on sale, and they turned out great.

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78 Dave S June 21, 2012 at 6:05 pm

OMG…this was absolutely amazing….the picture looked terrific, but you know…you look at a picture and the finished result never looks the same. This did, and tasted as good as it looks.

I have one of those Demi meat tenderizers with the 48 sharp spears that dig into the meat. So those permeated the marinade into the middle of the meat as well.

SO good!

I had never heard of tri-tip steaks before, so while I was in Whole Foods last weekend I asked the guy at the meat counter and he said he was just about ready to put them out. Talk about timing…..

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79 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) June 22, 2012 at 7:35 am

Dave, I’m so glad you enjoyed the tri-tip! This is one of our favorite summertime grilling recipes.

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80 The Omnivore August 19, 2012 at 5:12 pm

Yum! This marinade sounds fantastic and I bet it would be VERY tasty on tofu as well.

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