Steak salad brings together best parts of summer
I pile my dinner plate with the makings of a robust salad: a mass of greens, sliced carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, often even leftover grilled vegetables. Then I thinly slice whatever meat I tossed on the grill and use that to top the salad. A sprinkle of vinaigrette and it's good to go.
For this salad, I went with my favorite grill-friendly steak, flank.
For the seasoning rub, I went with a simple blend, the highlights of which are fennel seeds and cumin.
Fennel-cumin flank steak salad
1 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Kosher salt and coarsely ground black pepper
11/4 pounds flank steak
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 5-ounce package baby arugula
1 green bell pepper, cored and diced
1 avocado, peeled, pitted and diced
1 4-ounce log soft goat cheese
1/2 cup dried cranberries
Heat the grill to medium-high.
In a mortar and pestle or spice grinder, combine the fennel, cumin, mustard, garlic powder, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Grind well, then rub the mixture over both sides of the flank steak. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Add the tomatoes and garlic, toss well, then set aside.
Divide the arugula between 4 serving plates. Top with the bell pepper and avocado. Crumble a quarter of the goat cheese over each plate, then sprinkle with dried cranberries.
Using an oil-soaked paper towel held with tongs, oil the grill grates. Add the steak and grill for 4 to 5 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes. Thinly slice the steak against the grain, then heap a quarter of it on top of each salad.
Spoon a quarter of the tomatoes, as well as any liquid in the bowl, over each salad. Makes 4 servings.
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