Saturday, April 3, 2010

Ginger Steak Salad

Don't let the word "salad" fool you... this Ginger Steak Salad is a main course, completely filling and packed with flavor. I want to relive it for a moment here...the marinated steak served hot over crisp spring greans with blanched snow peas and topped with a sweet and spicy asian- inspired dressing... Aubrey stopped speaking entirely. Not that he was chattering away or anything but when he did speak, it was to the point: "This could be the best thing I've ever had." Look out Thai Salmon.

This recipe was influenced by The Pioneer Woman's Ginger Steak Salad and is pretty much the same except I added Sriracha in place of jalepeno in the dressing and added sweet snow peas and crisp red onion for color and crunch. I think they gave a nice fresh balance to the rich steak.

Ginger Steak Salad (Serves 2-3 BIG salads)

For Steak Marinade:

2 Tbsp. Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp. Sherry
2 cloves Garlic, Minced
2 tsp. Brown Sugar
1 whole Rib-eye, Strip, Or Sirloin Steak ( I used sirloin and will probably try Rib-eye next time as it was a little tough.)
2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

For Dressing:

2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
2 Tbsp. Soy Sauce
2 Tbsp. White Sugar
1 Tbsp. Lime Juice
2 cloves Garlic, Finely Diced
1 Tbsp. Fresh Ginger, Minced

For Salad:

1/2 Red onion thin sliced lengthwise
5-8 oz ( 1 small package) of Organic Spring Greens

4 oz. fresh snow peas, blanched ( boil 2-3 minutes- let cool.)

1. Combine steak marinade ingredients in a Ziploc bag or shallow dish. Mix and insert steak. Marinate 30 min. - 2 hours.

2. Whisk together salad dressing ingredients. Set aside.

3.When steak is finished marinating, add 2 tablespoons olive oil to a hot skillet or grill pan. Cook steak about 1 1/2 minutes per side, or until medium rare. Remove from skillet and place on cutting board and allow to rest for 5- 8 minutes. Slice thin against the grain, working at an angle. TIP: prep board with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt to avoid losing any delicious flavor. Yeah, I learned that from The Naked Chef.

4. Mound salad greens on a platter or individual plates. Toss with peas and most of red onion. Top with sliced steak. Drizzle salad dressing over the top. Sprinkle with more red onion on top and you're all set.

I highly recommend serving with firecracker shrimp. Be sure to reserve some dressing for dipping.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Firecracker Shrimp

I made P-Dub's Ginger Steak Salad for dinner tonight and had some last minute inspiration to make Firecracker Shrimp in the style of Jaden at Steamy Kitchen. They practically have the same ingredients as the salad dressing so I thought, why the heck not?

"How many shrimp appetizer things do you think would be enough?" I yelled from the kitchen. Response: "Uhhhh.... " --- In Aubrey-speak, that means, "How long have you known me ? You call yourself my wife?" So, I made 14. He ate 10 of them. For perspective, these are JUMBO shrimpys. As in, not small. I can't blame him, though. They were super tasty and fairly easy to make. Probably even easier if I had read all of Jaden's tips beforehand.

Pioneer Woman has a recipe for firecracker shrimp which calls for SIRACHA sauce. Steamy Kitchen's version calls for sweet chili sauce of which I had none. So, I did a hybrid and replaced the sweet chili with the hot chili and it came out amazing.

Here's my adaptation though I highly recommend checking out the original recipe for some great tips that I missed ( which resulted in curly shrimp and less than uniform frying)....

Firecracker Shrimp (in the joint styles of Steamy Kitchen and Pioneer Woman)

14 large tail-on shrimp, deveined and nicked (basically cut three little nicks in the curve of the shrimp to make it lie flat- I read this tip halfway through.)

7 eggroll/springroll wrappers, cut in half diagonally (2 triangles)

oil for frying

Marinade ( this quantity is enough for 20-25 shrimp)

1 tsp. grated garlic
1/2 tsp. grated ginger
1/2 tsp. sesame oil
1 1/2 tsp. soy sauce
1 1/2 tsp. SIRACHA!
1 tsp cornstarch

Cornstarch Paste- mix well to combine

1 Tb cornstarch
1/4 cup water

1. Combine marinade ingredients in a bowl and marinate shrimp for 20 minutes.

2. Pat dry each shrimp with a paper towel. Wrap each shrimp in a wrapper half. Seal with cornstarch paste. You can see detailed pics of how all this is done and why here.

3. Fry in hot oil for 3 minutes, until golden brown and shrimp is cooked through. Transfer to papertowel lined plate to sop up oil.

Serve with SIRACHA! for dipping ( also, if you're making the Ginger Steak Salad, the dressing is a fab dip, too.)