Friday, February 18, 2011

Blood Red Valentine

Dear Jess,

So, truth be told, we didn't make this on Valentines Day. However, we did make it a few days before in the spirit of St. Valentine. So I think it counts.

I wanted to try something different and something un-Jamie (although I love him so much). I don't deal with red meat very often, so that made it an adventure as well. My mom ordered and received The Best of Clean Eating cookbook, and I was most anxious to try something from it. While flipping through it (the first of many times) this recipe jumped out.

I must say that it holds lots of flavor, but next time I think I would beat the meat, as it would make it much more tender. Also, I didn't realize until too late that I did not have a working thermometer, so I got frustrated with checking to see how the middle was. (I hate cutting it open before it's done. It takes away from the moment, I think.) My mom said I '...nailed it. The outside was perfectly well done, and the middle was perfectly pink.' So I must have done something right!

Jason and I were going to make another dish that involved red meat, but the car that his mom left him (while he's house sitting for her as his family is in the Dominican) quit on Lansdowne Street and we had to get it towed to her house. So we skipped grocery shopping and ate pizza instead. We do plan on making the skipped dish soon though... so stay tuned!

Flank Steak Roll with Spinach and Garlic
From The Best of Clean Eating, Page 27
olive oil
1/4 cup whole-wheat panko
1 tbsp pine nuts, toasted (I used sliced almonds)
2 tsp red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 tsp dried red pepper flakes
1 (1lb) flank steak, trimmed of visible fat
3oz spinach leaves (about 6 cups)
kitchen string

1. Preheat oven to 400. Arrange a rack in a baking pan and coat with cooking spray.

2. In a small bowl, combine panko, nuts, vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper flakes. Set aside.

3. Place steak on a work surface. Holding a sharp knife (ideally a carving knife with a thinner blade than a chef's knife) parallel to the work surface and positioned along one of the longer sides, cut steak almost in half horizontally, so it opens like a book. Spread steak open with the 'spine of book' aprallel to you.

4. Sprinkle panko mixture evenly over steak, leaving a one-inch border along the farthest edge. Arrange spinach on top of panko mixture. Beginning with the closest edge, roll steak up, gently pressing down on spinach. Rotate steak roll so it's vertical to you and tie crosswise at one-inch intervals with kitchen string. Place steak on rack in prepared baking pan and bake until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of steak registers 150F for medium doneness, about 35 minutes, or 130F for medium rare, about 30 minutes. Transfer steak roll to a cutting board, cover loosely with foil and let rest for 10 minutes (internal temperature will continue to rise to about 160F for medium and 140F for medium rare.)

5. Remove foil and string and carefully cut steak crosswise into half-inch slices. Serve drizzled with any juices accumulated on cutting board.

I am sorry this one took so long to put up. I have been working like crazy (which I love!) I love you, and can't wait to see you next weekend for the Bridal Show! Have an amazing long weekend and enjoy your Family Day.

I will love you forever,

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