Editor's note: Philadelphia food writers Joy Manning and Tara Mataraza Desmond drop by each week with Meat Lite, which celebrates meat in moderation. Meat Lite was inspired by their book, Almost Meatless.
Here's proof you can have your steak and eat it, too. With no more than a pound of strip steak and creamy fingerling potatoes, salad is a satisfying meal for four. 'Tis the season for tossing a little creativity with tender spring greens, a flavorful change of pace from winter's grocery lettuce selection. If it's finally warm enough in your corner of the world, opt for grilling instead of pan-searing the steak.
And as the grilling months approach, consider paying a little more for alternatives to factory-farmed animals. If you apply the Almost Meatless philosophy of using smaller amounts of meat in recipes with lots of non-meat ingredients, the extra cost is stretched across several meals, making for a surprisingly economical approach to eating.
- Yield:serves 4
- 5 ounces baby greens (your favorite variety of the season)
- 1 pound fingerling potatoes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 large shallot, minced
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons honey
- 1 pound strip steak
- 2 Pink Lady apples
- Coarse Salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 375° F. Wash the greens well, spin or pat dry and set aside.
Toss the potatoes with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Sprinkle with coarse salt and spread out in one layer on a baking sheet or in a glass baking dish. Roast in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until tender.
Heat the other tablespoon of olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and sauté until soft and fragrant, just about 1-2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, scrape the shallots and oil into a small mixing bowl and reserve the pan. Add the honey and the vinegar to the warm shallots. Whisk together and add a pinch of coarse salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Whisk in the remaining olive oil to form an emulsion and set aside for the flavors to meld.
Return the sauté pan to high heat (it should still have a slight coating of oil from the shallot sauté). Season the steak with coarse salt. When the pan is just about smoking, add the meat to it. Sear the steak on one side for 3-5 minutes, or until a crisp, brown crust has formed. Flip the meat over and transfer the pan to the oven. Remove the potatoes. Let the meat cook in the oven for about 5-7 minutes for medium. When the meat has reached the desired doneness, remove and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
When the potatoes are just cool enough to handle, quarter them. Core and quarter the apple. Toss the warm potatoes and the apple with the greens and the vinaigrette. Slice the steak thinly and fan out on top of the salad. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.