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Spinach Salad with Nectarine Vinaigrette and Marinated Flank Steak

Contributed by: News Canada

1st Prize - Salad Category. Recipe created by Lyn Weingarten, Austin, Texas. Make It Special Chef Recipe Contest

Chef Quote: "I'm fascinated with various fruit and meat combinations. The sweetness and slight acidity of nectarines make an excellent marinade that tenderizes and flavors the meat. The nectarine's flavor and tender, pulpy flesh combines well with the other ingredients to create a creamy, smooth textured vinaigrette." -Lyn Weingarten

(NC) - Tender, nectarine-marinated flank steak "beefs up" this colorful spinach salad. Fresh bite-size spinach greens are tossed with vinaigrette made with a fresh California nectarine, then layered with slices of flank steak. The steak may be placed in the marinade for two hours for just a hint of flavor, or soaked up to 12 hours for a more intense flavor. Fresh nectarine and red bell pepper slices for garnish complete the look and flavor of this simple but exotic salad.

Ingredients:

  • Flank steak:

    • 1-1/2 lbs. flank steak
    • 1 California nectarine, pitted and coarsely chopped
    • 1 cup chardonnay
    • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
    • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek paste*
    • 2/3 cup red onion, finely chopped
    • 1 tablespoon finely minced cilantro

  • Vinaigrette:

    • 1 California nectarine, peeled, pitted and coarsely chopped
    • 1/3 cup rice vinegar
    • 1/2 cup canola oil
    • 1/2 cup olive oil

  • Salad:

    • 8 cups of pre-washed, pre-cut spinach (About 1-1/2 bags; allow about 2 cups per person, loosely packed.)
    • 1 California nectarine, pitted and neatly sliced (for garnish)
    • 1 red bell pepper, roasted, seeded and sliced (for garnish)

Directions:

* Sambal oelek is a Vietnamese ground chili paste. It may be found in large supermarkets or Asian markets.

For Flank Steak:

Blend chopped nectarine and chardonnay in food processor until mostly liquefied. Pour into an oblong glass dish that will be used to marinate the flank steak, and add the soy sauce, sambal oelek paste, red onion and cilantro. Add flank steak, cover with plastic and refrigerate for 2 to12 hours, depending on the intensity of flavor desired.

Turn at least once during the marinating process. Discard marinade.

Grill over direct heat near time of service, about 10 minutes per side for 1-1/2 inch thick flank steak, until meat reaches an internal temperature of 140 F for medium doneness. Allow to rest for five minutes, then slice very thinly against the grain.

For Nectarine Vinaigrette:

Process chopped nectarine and rice vinegar in food processor until totally smooth. With processor running, gradually drizzle in canola oil and olive oil and process until thoroughly mixed.

Assembly:

Toss spinach in bowl with enough salad dressing to coat leaves lightly. Dish salad onto plates. Arrange flank steak slices on top of spinach and garnish with nectarine and red bell pepper slices. Pass additional dressing at the table.

Serving Size: Makes 4 Servings And 1-1/2 cups dressing


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