Pearl onions are more of a summer treat, but I love them and I thought they’d go well with this dish. Brussels sprouts are beautiful and iconic around this time of the year and so are golden beets, they are simply delicious and beautiful, they are a little more delicate in flavor than their red counterparts. And who doesn’t love green beans. They can deliver a lot of flavor when cooked right… and that means, when cooked simply in my opinion. Actually, vegetables in general require manipulation to deliver what they have to offer. And when it comes to vegetables, I prefer to cook them quickly, little seasoning, maybe some salt, butter, maybe some vinegar and olive oil. Vegetables are gentle and overcook easily. Treat them with respect and a bit of crunch is always preferable to a mushy texture.
This simple salad is so easy to make and super fun to eat. Takes about an hour to get everything ready if you’re cooking without help. You can roast the beets in advance, but I’d recommend roasting them right before you assemble the dish. Nice and light, this salad is a wonderful offset to the highly caloric diet we all indulge in around this time of the year :) Here’s how to make it!:
Ingredients (serves 2):
12 pearl onions.
12 brussels sprouts.
12 green beans
2 golden beets
1 lb ribeye steak
Some parsley olive oil vinagrete (see below)
Salt and Pepper to taste
Butter as needed… sorry, I don’t measure this, sue me.
For the beets. Cut off the green stalks with a knife, discard. Wrap the beets in tin foil tightly. I didn’t even bother to season them or add olive oil. They really need no help. Place them in a oven at 400F for about 40 minutes. Pierce the pouches with a skewer to feel how tender they are. If tender, remove from the oven and let alone until they are cooler so you can handle them, about 10 minutes. Remove the tin foil, remove the skin with your fingers, it should just peel off. Dice to your liking and set aside.
The pearl onions. Peel them by cutting off the root end, halving them and then with your fingers remove the outer dry peel layer. Add some butter to a non stick skillet on medium low heat. Melt. Place the onions flat face down first. Brown for a few minutes. Then toss around and get a little more browning. They should sort of fall apart in the skillet, don’t worry, it’s not rocket science and exactness isn’t what we’re after here. Once nice with hints of golden browning, remove from the heat. Place on a bowl.
To prepare the Brussels sprouts. Select a few that are nice and vibrantly green. Remove the few greener leaves, about 3 per sprout and reserve them. Cut the sprouts in half and reserve.
To prepare the green beans. Cut them in any shape you prefer. I cut them into 1 inch pieces. Remove the tough stem bit.
To blanch the green beans and brussels sprouts leaves. Ready a pot full of water (add a good pinch or two of salt, the water should be pleasently salty ) over high heat, and bring to a boil. While the water is heating up, prepare an ice bath. A bowl with water and ice, that’s all it is. Once the water is boiling, add the green beans and the brussels sprout leaves. Boil for a couple of minutes. The green color will intensify (I love this part). Fish out a piece of the green beans and taste. They should be a bit crunchy but cooked, and slightly seasoned, but their flavor should prevail. With a slotted spoon or a small strainer, transfer the beans and sprout leaves into the ice water bath. The color will be set and they can be transfer to a bowl until needed for the next step. I leave them in the ice bath. No rush.
To braise the brussels sprouts. Similarly to what was done to the onions. Place some butter on a non stick pan. Melt over medium heat. Place the sprout halves flat face down over the bottom of the pan. Allow to caramelize. This will take about 3-4 minutes. Now, this is my favorite part. Add enough water to the pan to come up half way the height of the sprout halves, yes.. its just a little water. You can add a pinch of salt, and bring to a simmer. Reduce the water until only a glaze is left at the bottom of the pan. Remove from the heat. The sprouts should be cooked throughly, and beautifully glazed in their own caramelized butter sauce.
To dress the green beans and brussels sprout leaves. Add a little butter to a pan over medium low heat. Add a little bit of champagne vinegar. A few drops should be enough. Add a pinch of salt. Add the green beans and sprout leaves. Toss about for a bit, until everything is glazed and warm. We’re not cooking them here, just dressing them and warming them up so they can go on the final dish. I add the onions to the pan as well, to heat them up.
To sear the steak. Ok, this steak wasn’t as thick as I would have liked. Cooking thin steaks is tricky. They overcook really easily, and I have to admit, mine overcooked a bit closer to medium and not medium rare which is where I would have liked it. But for a steak salad, this is probably ok (here’s me trying to find an excuse) anyways, aside from the technicalities.. Season the steak with plenty of salt at least 20 minutes before searing, trust me. Heat up some clarified butter or a good high smoke point oil, like vegetable oil or grape seed oil. On high heat, when the oil is shimmering… pat the meat with a paper towel, and add the steak carefully on the pan. It is going to splatter. Don’t worry, that’s just how it goes. Use tongs if you aren’t used to using your hands. Let sear for about 2-3 minutes on one side. Turn over, sear for about 1 minute. Turn off the heat. Let the steak sear for another minute and remove from the pan. Place on a cutting board and allow to rest for 10 minutes. This is crucial unless you want steak blood all over your dish… which is not a bad thing really. I love that stuff, but for presentation purposes I decided to serve a less messy steak.
To make the parsley vinagrete. Simply select some nice and green parsley leaves, about 15-20, place them in a blender. Add about a half a cup of extra virgin oil. I added a bit of Pedro Ximenez vinegar and a little tiny bit of dijon mustard, along with a pinch of kosher salt. Blend for a few minutes, transfer to a squeeze bottle.
When you’re ready to plate. As you by now have noticed. Yes, although a simple dish, to get every component onto the plate warm, takes some logistics and only practice in the kitchen can help that. Warming the plates in the oven prior to serving helps a lot. Something I didn’t do, but I can totally see the benefit of doing . A little planning ahead helps. Have your components ready and warm. Sprinkle them over the plate leaving space in the center of the plate to place the steak. Slice the steak against the grain. Place the steak slices over a bed of golden beet round. Dress with some parley oil. Eat immediately. Seriously. Enjoy!