Heirloom tomatoes are everywhere right now. The heat of summer has finally paid off in huge, bursting-at-the-seams glories in red, yellow, and green. If you’re in an area that favors beefsteak tomatoes, you’re in luck with this one.
I found some Thai basil at the Farmers’ Market and knew I needed a recipe that used copious amounts of it. I love this stuff. Every time I eat at a Thai restaurant, I order something with basil in it. I can’t resist. If my husband rubbed himself with Thai basil, I’d be in serious trouble of getting a public indecency charge.
So I put it all together. Everything here is seasonal, fresh, and emblematic of summer, even as the days are beginning to shorten and the nights are taking on a cool edge. We may need a blanket these days when we look at the stars, but we can still taste all the sun that went into this salad. Get it while you can.
Thai-Inspired Steak Salad w/ Green Beans
1 large tomato (preferably heirloom and garden-fresh)
1 large garlic clove, minced then mashed to a paste with a pinch of salt
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. fish sauce (or more, to taste)
juice of 1 lime (zest it first for steak, see below)
2 Tbsp. cilantro, finely chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
3-4 lbs. sirloin steak
fish sauce, for sprinkling
salt and pepper, to taste
1 lb. green and/or wax beans, trimmed
1 red onion, sliced thinly
1 large, 2-4 smaller, or a handful of cherry tomatoes, cut into wedges
1) Generously S&P the steak, then sprinkle fish sauce and rub lime zest all over both sides. Leave at room temp while you’re making the salad, or wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and put in the refrigerator to marinate, up to 24 hours.
2) Make dressing: Cut tomato in half and grate on large-holed side of a box grater set over a bowl to catch the juices until left with nothing but skin. Add the rest of the ingredients for the dressing to a large bowl, stir together, and set aside.
3) Prepare grill. Steam the green beans until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes in the microwave or 2-4 minutes over the stove. Run under cold water to stop cooking. When cooled off, add beans to bowl with dressing, along with onion and tomatoes.
4) When grill is hot, grill steaks for 4-5 minutes or until good grillmarks appear. Be aware that since sirloin is lower in fat, you want it pink in the middle to maintain its tenderness, so keep an eye on your meat and adjust accordingly for the steak’s thickness. Flip and grill another 4-5 minutes or to desired doneness. Remove steak to a plate, tent with foil, and allow to rest 5 minutes. Slice steak thinly against the grain and serve piled on top of a healthy serving of salad.