Happy new year! I’ve been absent, gallivanting doing who knows what. Has it really been two months? Yes it has. I haven’t eaten or cooked a single thing since I last updated, honest. I now return with a tasty morsel to nourish your bloated post-yule bellies. It is this:
Isn’t it beautiful? The portions listed below served three for lunch. It’d do two nicely for dinner.
You will need:
2 fillet steaks (or steaks of your choice)
A large portion of salad leaves (I used butter lettuce, red leaf lettuce and a bag of mixed babyleaf salad including spinach and rocket)
1 small cucumber, sliced lengthwise in two, with the seeds scooped out, and sliced on the diagonal
150g meli melo tomatoes (mixed baby tomatoes of various colours and sizes – any tomatoes that you like will do)
50g dried cranberries
50g pecan nuts, slightly broken
1 pomegranate, sliced in half and with the delicious ruby-red seeds knocked out
For the dressing:
Juice of one lemon and one lime
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
1-2 red chillis, seeded and chopped
Salt and black pepper, to taste
Now, I need to say – I loved this salad but the dressing lacked something. I’d advise you to play around with quantities and tastes and even introduce new flavours. I was looking for something nice and zingy but not so acidic as it would further cook the beef, which I like nice and rare in the middle. I first made a dressing with fish sauce, lime and sugar, going for a Thai theme, and then chucked it cos it was too salty. Then I made a similar sauce with a light soy base and it was equally horrible. This was pleasant but didn’t have the wow factor, so if you come up with a special dressing that you’d care to share with me, please do.
How to put it all together:
1. Sear your beef as you like it on a hot griddle pan with a little olive oil and butter. Ours was medium-rare. Allow to rest for a few minutes, then slice it as thinly as you can manage on the diagonal. Reserve any juices from the meat and add them to the dressing.
2. For the dressing, simply whisk the ingredients together. Season, taste and adjust.
3. In a large bowl, assemble your salad of leaves, cucumber, tomatoes, cranberries and nuts and toss together. Just before serving, add as much dressing as you’d like, reserving a spoonful or so per person for the final drizzle.
4. To plate up, use your hands and pile the leaves and vegetables in middle of large serving bowls. Top with the sliced, seared beef. Drizzle the meat with a little of the dressing, and sprinkle with lots of beautiful pomegranate seeds. Eat!