Saturday, January 23, 2021

Seared Steak with Apple Salad and Horseradish Vinaigrette


This Kate Merker salad  is the culinary equivalent of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony (which I believe to be the most magnificent piece of music ever written). There is something in the salad for everyone and the salad hits every single taste bud on your tongue. Actually it does not "hit" every taste explodes on the tongue like the chorus from "Ode to Joy".

There's the savory richness of the seared steak. The tart sweetness of green apple. The bitter and peppery snap of the watercress. And let us not forget the heat of the horseradish...beef's best friend. This is what's for supper tonight in the Gruggen household...along with a nice Cab and a piece of music by my friend, Ludwig. While it took a full three years of his life to write his Ninth Symphony, I feel joy that I can toss this meal together in about 20 minutes.


1 large ribeye steak, at least 1-1/2 inches thick, 1-1/2 to 2 pounds

2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided

Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 scallion, finely chopped

1 tablespoon prepared horseradish

1 Granny Smith apple, thinly sliced

1/2 seedless cucumber, thinly sliced

1 bunch watercress, stems discarded


  1. Place steak on a plate at room temperature for 2 hours prior to cooking.
  2. Heat oven to 450°F. Heat a large oven-safe skillet (cast iron recommended) on medium-high. Rub steak with 2 teaspoons olive oil, then season with ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper and cook until browned, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer skillet to oven and roast steak to desired doneness, about 6 minutes for medium-rare. Transfer steak to a cutting board and let rest for at least 5 minutes before slicing. 
  3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together vinegar, mustard, remaining 2 tablespoons oil, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper; stir in scallion and horseradish.
  4. Add apple and cucumber and toss to combine. Fold in watercress and serve with sliced steak.

Wine pairing: Cabernet Sauvignon

Grogs and Goldie, 1956

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