Friends are the most wonderful gift of life. I am a very fortunate person to have very long-lasting friendships, that after so many years we have become family to each rather than friends.
I am also very happy when my friends come to spend time with us. You know your friends love you when they come to Phoenix in the scorching heat of August. After all it is a dry 110 degree day…
To me it also mean that I get to have more fun in the kitchen preparing new meals. Yes, I do use my friends as guinea pigs.
This week-end a very dear friend of mine is here visiting from Northern California. Love it!!! not only we get to speak French all day long, but I get to prepare new dishes for her. And I have a fun menu planned….
Champagne in hand we started dinner.
We started her visit last night with a new dish adapted from Food and Wine cookbook: flank steak with herbed salsa. Very new territory for me, as it was my first time using cilantro and raw jalapeno in my cooking. The lime juice gave it a nice uplift, the scallions were gentle to the palate and not overpowering the flavor of the tomatoes and lime lemon juice. We enjoyed a crisp green salad on the side.
The result was delicious, but I am going to let you be the judge of that.
To end the evening dinner we had mangoes with rum over ice cream. A very refreshing combination and a summer must.
Tonight’s August 2, 2012 dinner:
Flank Steak with Herbed Salsa
Mangoes with Rum and Vanilla Ice Cream
FLANK STEAK WITH HERBED SALSA
2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
4 scallions, white only finely chopped
1 cup cilantro, finely chopped
½ large jalapeno, seeded and minced ( whole 1 if brave)
3 garlic clove, minced
Juice of 1 lemon
Juice of large ½ lime
Salt and freshly ground pepper
One 1 pound flank steak
Extra virgin olive oil
Preheat a grill pan or light a grill.
In a medium bowl, combine the tomatoes with the scallions, cilantro, Jalapeno, garlic and lemon – lime juice. Season the salsa with salt and freshly ground pepper.
Season with salt and pepper the flank steak.
Using a grill pan brush a shadow of oil on the bottom of it. Place the pan over high heat and when hot add the flank steak. Cook until nicely charred outside and medium rare inside. About 3 minutes per side.
Transfer the steak to a carving board and let rest for 5 minutes.
Thinly slice the steak across the grain and serve with the herbed salsa.
MANGOES WITH RUM AND ICE CREAM
2 ripe mangoes
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons dark rum
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (or a mix of lemon and lime)
1 tablespoon grated lime rind
Vanilla ice cream
Peel the mangoes and make sure that all green colored flesh is removed. Remove all the mangoes around the pit and slice the mango into ½ inch thick pieces. Discard the pit.
Combine the sugar, dark rum, grated rind and lemon-lime juice in a bowl and mix well. Add the mango pieces to it and gently mix.
Chill for a couple of hours. Serve alone in chilled glasses or over vanilla ice cream.
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