Sunday, March 13, 2011

Recipe 4: Steak Piperade

This recipe sounded great to begin with-- let's face it steak with peppers, score! I fell in love with this recipe for so many reasons even before I was able to cook it. First off, the recipe uses skirt steak (aka flank steak). This cut of meat is decently affordable and can be found in any grocery store. Flank steak is typically used to make fajitas, however with a little TLC (not the band, although Chili could be used-  insert lame joke) this cut of beef can be tender and delicious!

Next up, the recipe called for red onion and red or yellow bell peppers. Red onion and yellow and red peppers are very sweet and take on a sugary taste when cooked. Although red and yellow peppers can be a bit more expensive than green, it is definitely worth it in this dish. The simple elegance of the colors blending together with the perfectly cooked pink center of the beef is great (a definite eye pleaser!)

Steak Piperade
Williams-Sonoma, Simple Suppers, 2007

1 1/2 lbs skirt steak (aka flank steak)
Salt and Pepper
2 tablespoons of butter
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 red onion-chopped
3 red or yellow bell peppers- thinly sliced crosswise (around the equator, not pole to pole)
3 cloves of garlic- minced
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme- chopped
1/2 cup of dry white wine- an extra glass for the chef if necessary!
1 14.5 oz. can of diced tomatoes

Long slices  allow the steak to cook evenly.
Season the steak with salt and pepper. In a large frying pan over high heat, warm 1 tablespoon each of butter and oil. Add the steak and cook (turning once) on both sides. Cook to medium rare and tent with foil.

Warm the remaining tablespoon of butter and oil over medium heat. Add the onion, peppers, garlic and thyme and saute until the onion is barely softened. Add the wine, bring to a boil, stirring to get up the browned bits (this process is also called deglazing the pan) Stir in tomatoes and their juice and simmer for 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

A whole bevy of colors!
Slice the meat thinly across the grain (this yields more tender meat). Arrange the slices on a plate and spoon sauce over meat.
The paparadelle finishes this meal!

This recipe was awesome! I loved the simplicity and accessibility of ingredients. This dish is nice for those who can't afford a steak but want that delicious flavor. The sauce is light but chocked full of flavor.

Now I know that some might say this is just a deconstructed fajita and to those I would say "hush your mouth"! This dish does not have a smokey taste like that of a fajita, but rather a velvety lusciousness of a French bistro meal. To give this meal a bit more heft, I served it with a side of buttered paparadelle noodles. Andy loved this meal and said it was one of the best I had cracked down.

I think if you were to try it you would like it as much as I did. One more tip, I wouldn't suggest cooking the steak on the grill. The sauce pulls all of the delicious wonderfulness the steak leaves behind in the pan and the wine sucks it up, providing the sauce with tremendous flavor.

Give this recipe a try while the weather is still nice....


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