Category Archives: steak

Three Canapés: Tuna Nicoise, Balsamic Steak and Mushroom Goat Cheese

Canapés are always easy to make and look super impressive. I wanted to have a main course that was easy to eat and still had great flavors. These three canapés really invoke the best flavors of France.

Tuna Nicoise Canapés:
2 7oz cans of tuna, drained
½ small onion, minced
1 tablespoon capers, minced
handful of black olives, chopped
handful of haricots verts, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
juice and zest of ½ lemon
salt and pepper
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon anchovy paste
½ teaspoon dijon mustard
bread rounds
grape tomatoes, halved

Using a form, mix the tuna, onion, capers, olives, beans, olive oil, lemon, and seasonings in a mixing bowl. Taste the tuna mixture and adjust the seasoning as needed.

Cover the bread rounds with a piece of lettuce. Put a hefty tablespoon of the tuna mixture over the lettuce. Top the tuna with a half of a cherry tomato and serve.

Balsamic Steak Canapés:
1 lb beef tenderloin
salt and pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
2 tablespoons olive oil
bread rounds
Parmigiano-Reggiano slices or chunks
Aged balsamic vinegar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrease. Season the beef with the salt, pepper, garlic and Cajun seasoning. Heat the olive oil in a heavy skillet with a metal handle on medium high heat. Sear the beef on all sides, about 3 minutes per side. Insert an electric probe thermometer inter the center of the beef and set the alarm for medium rare. Place the skillet of beef into the oven and cook until the alarm sounds.

Let the cooked beef rest for at least 15 minutes so that the juices redistribute. Slice the beef, against the grain, into thin bite sized piece.

To assemble, cover a piece of bread with a piece of lettuce. Place a piece of beef and Parmigiano on top of the lettuce and drizzle with the balsamic.

Mushroom Goat Cheese Canapés:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
½ medium onion, chopped
1 4oz package of mixed “wild” mushrooms, chopped
1 8oz package of sliced baby bella mushrooms, chopped
½ tablespoon dried thyme
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon bourbon or other brown liquor like cognac
melba toasts
1 8oz log of goat cheese
fresh thyme leaves

Heat the olive oil and garlic in a skillet on medium heat. Before the garlic browns add the minced onion and cook until it turns clear. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook until browned and soft. Once all of the liquid has evaporated and the mushrooms are soft and browned add the salt and pepper and liquor. Keep stirring the mushrooms until the liquor is almost evaporated. Taste the mixture and adjust the salt and pepper to taste.

Spoon a hefty tablespoon of mushroom onto the toasts. Add a slice of goat cheese and fresh thyme leaves to the top of the mushrooms and serve.


Single Saturday Night Steak Dinner

When I want “me” time, the best thing to do is pretend I’m a big shot guy and cook a big steak. This is the best way to make a steak at home, it always come out perfect and doesn’t stink up the house too much.


1 ½ lbs good steak
salt and pepper
garlic powder
olive oil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a cast-iron pan or a nonstick metal handled heavy frying pan, heat olive oil on medium high heat. Sear the steak on one side. When it is browned and caramelized, flip it over, put in the oven meat thermometer and place it in the over. Cook it till desired doneness.

Let the steak rest for 10 minutes. And then slice it against the grain. Serve with polenta, sautéed mushrooms and a reduced balsamic sauce.

Emergency Sustenance

I threw my back out. And of course I had to do this on a long holiday weekend. Since I live on the 3rd floor of a building with out and elevator nor a real working buzzer, it is easier for me to walk, hunched over to the kitchen, lean on the counter and cook something than it is to navigate the stairs and out to the street to get something delivered. What’s the fastest thing to make out of my freezer, fajitas! I always buy London broil or other cuts of lean steak when it goes on sale and fill my freezer with it to be frugal. Thank god.

Easy Fajitas

2lbs London broil or skirt steak
1 package of frozen pepper strips from Trader Joes or 2 red bell peppers sliced thin
1 large sweet onion, sliced into thin half circles
garlic powder
fajita seasoning ( I by mine at William Sonoma or Whole Foods)
olive oil

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.

On a large sheet pan, mix the peppers and onions. Liberally sprinkle with the salt, garlic powder and fajita seasoning. Throw on a few splashes of olive oil and toss. Spread it all evenly on the pan and place on the middle rack of the oven for about 10 minutes, till the veggies soften. While the veggies are in the oven, thinly slice the steak against the grain. Once the veggies have gotten soft, add the steak and more of the other ingredients if necessary. Toss and place it back in the oven. After 5 minutes, turn the steak and put it all back in the oven until its at your desired doneness.

Serve with a salad or tortillas, salsa, rice, beans and cheese.