Monday, February 21, 2011

What I'm Craving...

...apparently a wardrobe change in my fridge!  Last week's shot of warmth on the east coast had me yearning for springtime sun and a new crop of seasonal ingredients to play with.  What's a gal to do?  Make the best of what the present has to offer.  I opted for a little bit of winter heartiness with lighter ingredients.  The result: a gorgeous steak salad with radicchio, mixed greens, blood oranges & scallions.  Topped with fresh pecorino romano and a light garlic vinaigrette.

winter-to-spring steak salad
serves 1 
4 ounces top sirloin (mine's from my favorite guys over at Dickson's Farmstand Meats in Chelsea Market)
1 blood orange, peeled and segmented (aka "supremed")
2 to 3 cups mixed greens and radicchio, chopped
2 scallions, chopped
2 Tbsp or so fresh grated pecorino romano (I use a vegetable peeler to get nice, broad but thin slices)

garlic vinaigrette (this is a riff off of one of my all-time favorite dressings--which is served up at Terroir Wine Bar in the East Village)
1 Tbsp champagne or white wine vinegar
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 egg
2 small cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon shallot, minced
dash of onion powder (I know it's sort of culinary blasphemy, but if the genius chefs at Terroir and Hearth do it, I'm happy to follow suit)
salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste
a good pinch or two of grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  In an oven-proof saute pan or cast iron pan, add a drop of olive oil over high heat.  Season steak with salt and pepper and cook about 3 to 4 minutes on each side.  Finish steak in oven, about 5 to 7 minutes for medium/medium rare.  Allow steak to rest for 5 minutes and slice.

For the vinaigrette, whisk ingredients together until well blended.  *Given that it calls for a raw egg, use dressing the day of (and if you're expecting, you may want to leave the egg out).  Toss mixed greens and radicchio with 1 to 2 tablespoons of dressing.  Arrange remaining salad ingredients with greens on a plate, top with sliced steak and serve.

*As a nutritional side note, my dear friend - and rockstar cardiologist - Lauren, informed me over the weekend of some new (though not shocking) research that gives eggs a little lift when it comes to the "cholesterol bad rap".  As reported in the Washington Post and LA Times among other publications, eggs may have 14 percent LESS cholesterol than previously thought, and 64 MORE vitamin D - and still are holding strong at 70 calories and just 6 grams of fat for a large egg. The verdict's still out on just how exactly dietary cholesterol, like that from eggs, impacts our blood cholesterol, so most definitely keep the yolk in there for greater nutrients and taste!

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