Sundays’ seem to offer the best time to spend with family. I usually spend my Sundays doing errands and topping up on groceries. When the spirit moves me, I love to invite my nephew, his fiancé, and my son and his g/f over for some fun and a nice dinner. They are all hard working and may not feed themselves as nutritiously as they should. It’s a great opportunity to feed them well and send them off with care packages. When I do my laundry and go shopping, I’m not always in the mood to work so hard on dinner. So I find a way to make an elegant sumptuous feast in a snap.
Last night my nephew accepted my invitation with the caveat that he must leave by 9:00 pm, tight project deadline. He’s a true carnivore so I decided to cook a Baretta Organic beef flank steak. In fact the majority of the ingredients were fresh organic produce. The flank steak is a beef steak cut from the abdominal muscles of the cow. A relatively long and flat cut which is full of blood…meaning tasty and juicy. It is a worked muscle so needs to be marinated then grilled, pan-fried, broiled, or braised for increased tenderness. This recipe uses roasting and braising in the marinade which makes for juicy.
The marinating process can’t be rushed. So when I got home from shopping, I popped the steak into a bag with some honey, balsamic, soy etc…. and let it do it’s thing. I placed the potatoes and beets in the oven an hour before the guests arrived. And 25 minutes before serving time, the steak went in with them. The oven heat is high enough to take the crowd. Everything was cooked to perfection.
The brightly coloured salad was fresh and inviting. I had some croissants in the freezer to bake off while I was cutting the flank. After sharing some Spanish red wine, Hecula 2009 Bodegas Castrano Monastrell, and fun conversation, nothing was left on the plates. That’s how you know dinner was a success! Either a success or after a day of sightseeing, working on projects, and preparing for job interviews the bunch were ravenous?
Savoury Roasted Honey Balsamic Flank Steak Serves 4
2 pounds flank steak ½ small cooking onion, minced 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar ¼ cup honey ¼ cup dark soy sauce freshly ground black pepper
Place steak in a large sealable heavy plastic bag.
Place all ingredients into the bag, and mix around to blend.
Marinate overnight or at least for 2 to 3 hours in refrigerator.
Turn bag over every hour, you want all parts of the steak to touch the marinade.
Remove steak from bag, season with freshly ground pepper and place in a roasting pan with the marinade.
In a 400 degree preheated oven, roast the steak for 25 minutes for medium.
Rest steak on a cutting board for 10 minutes to distribute juices and keep them in the steak.
Then cut thin slices across the grain at about a 45 degree angle.
Plate with a pouring of the juices on the individual servings.
Baked Potatoes with Parmesan Chive Sour Cream
4 medium sized Russet Potatoes 1 cup low fat organic sour cream 1/3 cup or more to taste, chives, thinly sliced ¼ cup parmesan cheese, microplaned
Make a long slit down the centre of each potato
Place in a preheated 400 degree oven
Bake for 1 hour
In the meantime, mix the sour cream, chives, parmesan and freshly ground pepper in small bowl.
When the potatoes come out hot, squeeze gently to open, place a generous dollop on each one and serve.
Baby Arugula Green Apples and Roasted Beet Salad with Toasted Sunflower Seed Dressing Serves 4
6 cups baby arugula half a large green apple, sliced very thin, you can use a mandoline if you have one half a large beet, roast in the oven in foil – with potatoes, slice very thin ½ a large carrot, sliced very thin ¼ cup sunflower seeds, toasted extra virgin olive oil balsamic vinegar coarse kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Place the vegetables in a large bowl
Drizzle lightly with extra virgin olive oil and balsamic
Season with coarse kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Gently mix to incorporate
Top with Toasted Sunflower Seeds