Recipe by Amelia Saltsman from The Santa Monica Farmer’s Market Cookbook.
Bloomsdale spinach makes an interesting change from the traditional arugula with steak found in the classic Italian tagliata. Bloomsdale and other Savoy (bumpy-leaved) spinaches have no tannin pucker and hold up better in salads and cooking than flat-leaved varieties. Even the stems are sweet. Season meat with salt before cooking to deepen the flavors you get from browning and to help develop a crust. This dish travels well for picnics.
A riot of color and taste, this salad uses golden and candy-striped Chioggia beets. Berry-toned blood oranged brighten the beets’ sweet earthiness. In spring, sweet-spicy arugala flowers are a beautiful addition to the salad. The delicate, little whiskered blossoms also make a pretty kitchen counter bouquet.
- Top Sirloin Steak - 2, 1 pound each
- Sea Salt -
- Bloomsdale Spinach - 1 pound
- Extra-Virgin Olive Oil - 1 tablespoon
- Black Pepper -
- For the Beet and Blood Orange Salad
- Blood Oranges - 4
- Golden and Chioggia Beets - 3 bunches, roasted and sliced
- Packed Pepper Cress - 1 cup
- Red Butter Lettuce - 1 head, large leaves torn
- Avocado - 1, pitted, peeled, and cubed
- Extra-Virgin Olive Oil - 1 to 2 tablespoons
- Sea Salt -
- Ground Black Pepper -
- Arugala Flowers (optional) - 1/2 cup
Heat a grill to medium. Rub about 1 teaspoon of salt into the meat and fat of each steak. Grill, turning once, to desired doneness, about 4 minutes on each side per inch of thickness for medium-rare.
Cut the spinach crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide ribbons (chiffonade) and place in a bowl. Add the oil, a little salt, and generous grinds of pepper and toss. Mound the spinach on a platter. Cut the steaks, across the grain and on the diagonal, into thin slices. Lay the steak slices over the spinach and serve.
For the salad, peel and segment the oranges into a salad bowl, reserving the membranes. Add the beets, pepper cress, lettuce, and avocado to the bowl. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of oil, and squeeze the membranes over the top, releasing their juice. Sprinkle the salad with salt and pepper and toss, then taste and adjust with more oil if needed. Scatter the arugula flowers over the top and serve.
Chef's Tip: Brooke Williamson Nick Roberts, chef-owners of Beechwood Restaurant in Venice, add complexity to their beet salads by marinating the roasted beets for at least 24 hours in a mixture of honey, olive oil, shallots, thyme, salt, and a splash of sherry vinegar.