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This week's lunch box ushers in fall with warm, nutty flavors. It's just past tomato season, but not quite "hearty stew"' season, so I like to think of this as a transitional meal.
Typically made from lemon, garlic, and parsley, gremolata is an excellent way to use basic pantry ingredients to add flavor—especially for overnight refrigeration. I've tweaked the formula a bit to include hazelnuts and maximize their nutty taste. Crushed hazelnuts are briefly fried in a shallow pool of olive oil, both to toast the nuts and infuse the oil. The steak and roasted cauliflower are slicked with the oil before being cooked, and the remaining oil is mixed with the crushed hazelnuts, parsley, and lemon zest (no garlic here) to help better coat the cauliflower. There are hints of nuttiness throughout, both in the crunchy smattering of hazelnuts and in the touches of oil in each component. It's a dish that's simple and elegant, and will remain such until the next day.
About the Author: Suzanne Lehrer is a writer and recipe developer in New York and a recipe editor for Cooking Channel. When not curating her budding hot sauce collection, she puts her French Culinary Institute education to good use in kitchens all around town. Follow her recipes and cooking adventures at TheSuzChef.com and on twitter @the_suzchef.