Homer Simpson famously told Lisa that you don’t win friends with salad. Well he hasn’t tried this one yet.
I can’t help but to think back to the first time I went to an all you can eat buffet with Mike in high school. He would yell at anybody taking salad because you were filling up on the cheap stuff. “Only take meat and cheese”, he would say. Well I think he would approve of a full plate of this, if the Flamingo served it.
The key to any steak salad, in my opinion, is flank steak. It’s cut from the back abdominal muscle. Much like brisket it has large muscle fibres but is more lean. Once the steak is prepared, slicing across the grain is the most important part of the recipe. The muscle grain is very pronounced and easy to see. There is a difference between a flank steak and skirt steak, so for this recipe, buy some flank steak.
Blue Cheese with Flank Steak
If you don’t like blue cheese you are in the wrong place. Blue cheese (especially in dip form) is the key to my wife’s heart. I can’t think of many better pairings than beef and blue cheese. I still remember the first time I had the combo. My sister talked me into ordering the black and blue burger at a local restaurant. Me, being a small town kid, was hesitant but trusted her. It was love at first bite.
Now let’s talk about the greens. I like a spring mix for this. Hearty greens that can stand up to red meat. Arugula is another option but is not for everyone. Mix this with any vegetables and you have a salad. For me simple is best, red onions and tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes work best.
Flank Steak Salad Dressing
Dressings are one of my favourite things to make. You cannot mess up a dressing, taste as you shake. There is a very simple formula to stick to and you will never buy another dressing in your life.
Oils are the base. Canola oil being the most neutral, olive oil is in the middle, extra virgin being the strongest. Then you have the sweet. This can be sugar, honey, maple syrup, agave nectar.
Next up the sour, any vinegar you have like red wine, white wine, or balsamic. Any citrus like lemon, lime or orange, you get the point.
Next up is the mustard. The main reason for this is not just flavour but it is an emulsifier. Mustard has natural lecithin that has the ability to mix oil and water. Any mustard works here.
A little bit of spice makes everything nice. You can use pepper, hot sauce, cayenne or anything with kick. Don’t forget a bit of salt to round it off and any herbs or accent flavours. I use this ratio 1 cup oil, 1/2 cup sweet, 1/2 cup sour, table spoon mustard, pinch of salt, pinch of pepper, and as much herbs if you want. Remember this is just a guide line, do what you like.
- BBQ Tongs
- Instant Read Thermometer
- Mason jar/salad dressing container
- Gas Grill or Pellet Smoker
- Large bowl
Salt & pepper
Note : You can use your favorite steak rub but there is plenty of flavour in the blue cheese and dressing.
Flank Steak Cooking Instructions
Season flank steak with salt and pepper (or use your favorite steak spice)
Method #1 Pellet Smoker/Grill
- If you are like me and have the camp chef with side kick, I love to add a bit of smoke before searing.
- Pre heat to 220F with the high smoke setting and crank the side kick with grill box to high.
- Insert probe into thickest part of steak and smoke for 30 mins or until the internal is 120. No higher. Then throw on the grill box for a quick sear and some nice grill marks.
Method #2 Gas Grill
- Gas grill. Heat on high. Grill for 5-8 mins turning once. Pull when internal reaches 132 for medium rare.
Next we rest the steak. Longer is better for the salad. Try resting on a baking rack over a cutting board and cover with foil. Less surface tension means less juice loss.
After resting 10 mins slice thinly against the grain.
- 250 grams of greens
- 1/2 cup blue cheese
- Thinly sliced red onions
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- 1 TBS stone ground mustard. (I like homemade)
- 2 TBS red wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- 1/3 cup olive oil.
- Dash of salt and pepper
Put ingredients in a mason jar and shake until mixed (I realize this doesn’t follow my ration above exactly; but this is for steak. It deserves to be special!
Flank Steak Salad Assembly
Assemble the salad family style in a large bowl or dish up into smaller bowls. Greens first, top with steak, drizzle with dressing.
I hope you enjoy this as much as we do!
Flank Steak Salad
- BBQ tongs
- Mason jar/Salad Dressing Container
- Gas grill or Pellet Smoker
- Large Bowl
- 1 Flank Steak
- Salt and Pepper to taste You can also use your favorite steak rub here if you prefer
- 4 cups greens Spring mix is best
- 1/2 cup blue cheese
- 1/2 cup red onions Thinly sliced
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes Sliced in half
- 1 Tbsp Stone ground mustard Homemade is best
- 2 Tbsp Red wine vinegar
- 1/2 Tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 Tsp honey
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- Dash of salt and pepper
- Season flank steak with salt and pepper (or use your favorite steak spice)
- Method #1 : Adding a little smoke prior to grilling ; Pre heat to 220F with the high smoke setting. (At the same time, crank your grill or sidekick to high). Insert probe into thickest part of steak and smoke for 30 mins or until the internal is 120. No higher.Then, throw on the grill for a quick sear and some nice grill marks. (no more than 3-5 min per side : internal temp. of 135-145)
- Method #2 : Gas grill. Heat on high. Grill for 5-8 mins turning once. Pull when internal reaches 132 for medium rare.
- Rest the steak. Longer is better for the salad. Try resting on a baking rack over a cutting board. Less surface tension means less juice loss.
- After resting 10 mins slice thinly against the grain.
- Combine greens, onions, tomatoes, and blue cheese in large serving bowl or divide into 4 equal bowls if desired
- Combine all dressing ingredients into a mason jar and shake until mixed.
Put it all Together
- Top Greens with steak and drizzle with dressing. Serve immediately. Enjoy!