No micro greens of any kind were harmed in bringing this dinner to the table.
It was a pretty simple meal. I wanted to make it so because I didn’t feel up to any challenges last night, and because, having decided the centerpiece on the plate would be a terrific small beef steak and, after that, that the principle vegetable would be Brussels sprouts, I knew there wouldn’t be any need for contrivances or adornments.
But the steak was a very special steak; the sprouts, while perhaps not out of the ordinary otherwise, were accompanied this time by one complex dried chili pepper; and the tomatoes, included mostly for their color, happened to be “the best cherry tomatoes”, by both the farmer’s testimony and my own.
- a single small (eleven and a half-ounce) grass-fed, grain finished culotte, or picayna steak from Sun Fed Beef in the Union Square Greenmarket, brought to room temperature, halved crosswise, seasoned on all sides with sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, seared briefly on the top, or thick, fat-covered side inside an oval enameled heavy cast iron pan, the other, long sides cooked for 2 or 3minutes each, then the ends and the narrow bottom side seared, each very briefly, the steaks removed from the pan, perfectly medium-rare, arranged on 2 warm plates, each topped with a pat of defrosted ramp butter that I had made last April using some small, first-of-the-season woodland ramps from Lucky Dog Organic, a bit of juice from an organic lemon from Whole Foods Market, and some Organic Valley ‘Cultured Pasture Butter’, the steaks then allowed to rest for about 4 minutes
- a couple dozen Brussels sprouts from Lani’s Farm, the little cabbages liberated from their stalk moments before, tossed inside a bowl with olive oil, sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, plus one whole hot dried Sicilian peperoncino from Buon Italia (it can be seen at 12:30 in the picture at the top), roasted inside a medium size unglazed seasoned Pampered Chef pan until the sprouts were partly brown and crisp on the outside (at which time they taste surprisingly sweet and somewhat nutty)
- eight of “The Best Cherry Tomatoes” from Stokes Farm, each punctured once with a trussing needle, rolled around in a little olive boil inside a small Pyrex skillet until they were a little more than warm, seasoned with sea salt and black pepper, mixed with some torn leaves of basil (Gotham Greens Rooftop, from Whole Foods, arranged on the plates, where some more basil was scattered on the top
- the wine was a Spanish (Rioja) red, Bodegas de la Real Divisa Marqués de Legarda Crianza 2013
- the music was the album, ‘Johanna Beyer: Sticky Melodies’