I won't lie, desserts all around me and I'm craving salads at the moment - a part of it is that I have this fear of being unable to shake off those couple of pounds we all seem to gain during the holidays.
So I'm just happy as can be that petite sirloins are on sale at my butcher. I'm just feeling real good at the thought of a having a hefty salad admidst freezing temperatures.
So I thought about throwing together a salad that is high in protein but is also super fresh with tons of veggies and herbs & refreshing and summery (yup, in the middle of winter). And so I head out to the Asian market where I load up on fresh bean sprouts, mint, lemon grass & cilantro along with some other goodies. Woo hoo!
Now, I would normally go for a New York strip an inch thick so I can cut it into very thin slices which I think would be quite lovely but in this case, did I mention that petite sirloins are on sale?
So my plan is to sear the meat and marinade in a lovely concoction of sesame oil and lemongrass and herbs and leave it for at least 4 hours (overnight if one can manage it). Then serve it on a bed of freshies like lettuce & salad veggies & radishes (which I need an excuse to eat) and herbs. Sounds good doesn't it?
I think so!
The first step is to get the marinade and dressing going -
Dressing - In a screw top jar (not bowl as shown- I'll explain in a minute) add vegetable oil, lemon juice, sesame oil, chilly paste, sambal oelek or sriracha, chopped mint, chopped cilantro, soy sauce, sugar, finely chopped lemon grass, chopped garlic, thinly sliced or grated ginger, salt & pepper
Alright, so I started in a bowl and no matter how hard I whisked, I could get the oil & the rest of the ingredients to blend. Once I transferred to a screw top jar, close lid tight, 30 seconds of shaking and done! Taste & adjust seasonings for a sweet, tangy & marinade with a little heat.
In a heavy bottom pan preferably a cast iron pan, heat olive oil till hot. Cook steaks medium, I still want a pink center & I always follow Steven Raichlen's guide to cooking steaks
Steaks 1/2” to 3/4” thick-
- Rare – 1-2 minutes / side
- Medium – 2-3 minutes/side
- Well-done - 3-4 minutes/side
Steaks 1” thick-
- Rare – 3-4 minutes / side
- Medium – 4-6 minutes/side
- Well-done - 6-7 minutes/side
Since my steaks are barely 1/4" thick (I did mention they were on sale didn't I?) I am going to cook them for no more than 1-1/2" per side on medium-high heat.
As I had mentioned earlier, were the steak an inch thick I would thinly slice but since mine are quite thin, I am going to cut them into 1/2" thick strips.
Add 1/4 cup of the marinade/dressing and toss the beef. Cover the bowl with cling wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight if possible. Refrigerate remaining dressing till ready to use.
Before you are ready to serve the salad, prepare the fresh ingredients. Keep a large salad bowl at hand.
Tear hearts of romaine lettude into 1" chunks. Wash and dry in a salad spinner or with kitchen paper towels. Add washed & sliced red pepper.
Peel and slice red onion. Wash the radishes & discard root tips. Halve and finely slice. Add to the salad bowl.
Wash and peel English cucumber with a vegetable peeler. Wash and finely chop mint & cilantro. & wash bean sprouts. Add to the salad bowl. Add 1/4 cup of the dressing and toss thoroughly. Present the remaining dressing at the table for individual servings.
Pile the beef in a tee-pee shaped mound over the salad greens & serve immediately.
We had these for dinner with the most delicious Vietnamese Spring rolls - what an unbeatable combination!
I love fresh herb salads because they present an element of surprise with every bite.This was a really refreshing dinner and the dressing was rich with the lemongrass and ginger adding just the right punch. The minty freshness was nice blend with the salad greens.
ASIAN SEARED BEEF SALAD
Preparation time - 20 minutes
Cooking time - 15 minutes
Shopping list -
1-1/2 lb Sirloin steaks
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tbs olive oil
Marinade & Dressing -
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I think olive oil has too strong a flavor for Asian dishes)
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
1-1/2 tbs sriracha, sambal oelek or chilly paste
1 tbs soy sauce
1-1/2 tbs sugar
2" piece lemongrass
2 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tsp sesame oil
1 bundle heart of romaine lettuce
1/2 English cucumber
1/4 red bell pepper
1/4 red onion
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
1-1/2 cups bean sprouts
Mint & Cilantro - Wash & finely chop
Lemon grass - Use 2" piece from the bottom. Cut and discard root tip. Slice and then cut into fine strips. Finely chop.
Garlic - Peel and finely chop
Ginger - Scrape & finely slice or grate
Combine Dressing - In a screw top jar add vegetable oil, lemon juice, sesame oil, chilly paste, sambal oelek or sriracha, chopped mint, chopped cilantro, soy sauce, sugar, finely chopped lemon grass, chopped garlic, thinly sliced or grated ginger, salt & pepper
Heart of romaine lettuce - Wash, discard any brown or discolored leaves. Tear with hand or kitchen shears to approx 1" bite size pieces. Use a salad spinner or using kitchen paper towels pat dry the lettuce to remove as much moisture as possible.
Radishes - Wash, cut and discard root tip and top. Halve and finely slice into semi-circles.
Red onion - Peel & finely slice into thin semi-circles
Red pepper - Wash & cut into thinly sliced strips
Cucumber - Peel leaving alternate strips intact (for looks), cut lengthwise & cut into 1/4" semi-circles.
Add all the herbs & vegetables including bean sprouts over the lettuce. Add 1/4 cup of the dressing & toss. Serve remaining dressing table side.
Mound the beef over the salad & serve immediately.