Weeknight Steak & Vegetables

17 Mar

Sadly, my home is not suited to grilling in the winter. Too much snow during Ottawa winters, no sheltered spot large enough to house the grill and protect the chef! As grilled is the way I like my beef steak, I rarely eat it in the colder months.

Weeknight Steak and Vegetables served over mashed potatoes

Weeknight Steak and Vegetables served over mashed potatoes

A few years ago, I stumbled across a recipe for sirloin steaks, quickly fried in a pan and served with tomato-sauced, pan-cooked vegetables. I long ago lost the source of this recipe, but it was from a newspaper or possibly Homemakers magazine. If anyone can provide the origin of this terrific recipe, I’ll happily cite it.

The meal comes together in a flash. Far more quickly than these directions will suggest. It is particularly good served with mashed potatoes, so get them started first. I prefer a Yukon Gold/yellow-skinned potato for mashing. I find using one very large potato per serving makes just the right amount of mashed. If the potatoes are new or thin-skinned, just scrub them up, trim out the eyes and cut into small pieces to speed up the boiling.

Set new, yellow-fleshed pototes to boil.

Set new, yellow-fleshed potatoes to boil.

As with many recipes, I often prepare the full vegetable amounts and half the protein amounts.  If you like a salad with your steak, you might consider cooking half the vegetable amounts listed here. Or make them all and use the extra as a side dish or pasta sauce later in the week.

I use my copper-bottomed skillet (a gift a friend brought me from Paris) for this recipe, because having the steak cooked on a non-Teflon surface adds bits of cooked meat that help flavour the sauce.

WEEKNIGHT STEAK with VEGETABLES                           Serves: 2

Preparation time: 15 minutes                    Cooking time: 16 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp (30 mL)                   olive oil
  • 2 medium                               zucchini (green and or yellow), cut into 1″ cubes
  • 1 large                                      onion, cut into thick wedges
  • 2 stalks                                    celery, cut into 1″ long pieces
  • 6 – 8 large                               mushrooms, stemmed and quartered
  • 3 cloves                                    garlic, peeled
  • 1 tsp (5 mL)                            dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1/2 lb (227 gm)                      boneless beef sirloin steak, 3/4″ thick
  •                                                   salt & pepper
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL)                  Zinfandel or other fruity dry red wine
  • 1 – 14.5 oz (400 mL) can     diced tomatoes, seasoned with basil, oregano and garlic (Aylmer’s brand calls their version ‘Italian’)

Instructions:

Cook vegetables in oil over Medium heat until tender-crisp.

Cook vegetables in oil over Medium heat until tender-crisp.

1.    In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium heat. Cook the zucchini, onion celery, mushrooms, garlic and crushed rosemary in the hot oil for 6 – 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. At this stage you want the vegetables to only cook to a tender-crisp point. Remove vegetables from the pan and set aside.

2.     Cut the steak into two equal portions. Season with salt and pepper. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil to the skillet and turn the heat up to Medium-High. Add the beef to the hot oil and cook for 2 – 3 minutes per side. Do not cook the beef more than medium-rare. It will continue to cook when removed from the pan and allowed to rest during the next stage of the recipe. Tent and keep warm.

Cook sirloin portions over Medium- high heat for 2 - 3 minutes per side (for 3/4" thick steak).

Cook sirloin portions over Medium- high heat for 2 – 3 minutes per side (for 3/4″ thick steak).

3.      Add the wine to the hot skillet (be ready to clean the splatter off the stove surface after supper) and immediately begin scrapping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Use a wooden spoon of silicone spatula for this step.

Add a fruity red wine, scrapping up brown bits form the bottom of the pan.

Add a fruity red wine, scrapping up brown bits form the bottom of the pan.

4.     Add the (undrained) can of diced, seasoned tomatoes to the pan. Bring the liquid to a boil and allow the tomato/wine mixture to boil slowly for about 5  minutes. You want the sauce to thickened slightly.

Add tomatoes and juice, bring to a boil and cook 5 minutes to thicken.

Add tomatoes and juice, bring to a boil and cook 5 minutes to thicken.

5.     Return the vegetables to the skillet and stir well to combine with the sauce. Allow it to cook a few minutes until the vegetables are nice and hot.

Return vegetables to pan to heat through with sauce.

Return vegetables to pan to heat through with sauce.

6.     Serve the vegetables and sauce over each piece of steak. I also like the sauce served over the mashed potatoes.

Ready to serve over mashed potatoes and skillet-seared sirloins.

Ready to serve over mashed potatoes and skillet-seared sirloin.

Mashed Potatoes

I never salt the water when I cook potatoes. Purists may argue with  me, but I don’t miss the salt. Once cooked and drained, I use a potato masher to roughly mash them. I add a dollop of butter and a couple of rounded tablespoons of sour cream (depending upon the amount of potatoes) and continue to mash and stir the potatoes until they are smooth and creamy looking. I add no salt or pepper, letting guests add these seasonings if they wish.

Reheating the Second Serving:

I store the second helping of mashed potatoes covered with the second half of the sauce and vegetables. They reheat well in the microwave, on High, in about 3 minutes. For the remaining steak portion, wrap it separately and then allow it to come to room temperature for at least 30 minutes before serving. I prefer to quickly fry both sides of the steak over Medium-High heat. The finished steak will be cooked more than the first serving (about Medium) but the texture will be superior to a microwave reheat which, in my opinion, ruins steak.

Satisfying steak --- until the return of the grill. Salut!

Satisfying steak — until the return of the grill. Salut!

Make certain you save some of the Zinfandel to enjoy with your Weeknight Steak and Vegetables. Raise a toast to a tasty winter steak and another for a quick return to grilling weather!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: