Asian coffee? And steak?
I know, it’s weird, right?
As it turns out, not really. It’s not weird. It’s A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!!!
Can you hear the emphasis in my little voice?
Actually, I recently read how adding a bit of coffee or espresso to a variety of things, can really jazz up the flavor, imparting a hidden depth and intricacy. Hidden, indeed ~ and this little addition more than jazzes things up. It makes them ~ say it with me now, “A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!”
The mention of espresso added to vinaigrette got my wheels spinning.
I love the deep umami flavor of steak, coupled with the sweetness of a little balsamic. Thus, the addition of the bitter but chocolatey goodness of really great espresso seemed liked magnificence. I didn’t stop there, though. Creamy miso (hence the “Asian” descriptive) and sweet nut butter thickens the sauciness to both savory and salubrious perfection.
Asian Espresso Steak Salad
For the “Sauce” Goodness:
1/4 cup freshly brewed espresso (1 shot, I suppose)
2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
1 Tbs. mellow white miso
1 Tbs. freshly ground peanut butter or almond butter
1 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
1 pinch of sea salt
2 large NY strip steaks
salt and pepper
1 large red bell pepper
4 cups fresh arugula
1/4 cup fresh basil (Thai basil is best here, but do what you can…)
Combine all “sauce” ingredients in a high speed blender and process until smooth.
Preheat oven to 500 degrees, along with a cast-iron grill pan. (As usual, this can be grilled outdoors instead). Bring the steaks to room temperature and season with salt and pepper. Pop the grill pan in the oven, along with the red pepper. After about 5 minutes, flip the steaks and the pepper (alongside the pan on the wire rack). Cook an additional 3-5 minutes. (I like my steak juicy red and rare).
Remove steak and pepper from the oven and allow to “sit.”
Using some sort of hand or oven mitt protection, slice open the pepper, discard the seeds, and roughly chop.
After about 5 minutes of resting, slice the steaks against the grain.
Toss the steak strips with the red peppers and fresh arugula, throwing in and sprinkling with the fresh basil. Liberally distribute the ungodly delicious “sauce” over, in, and among the salad.
Yes, it truly is as good as it sounds – and looks.