Grilled Steak with Black Olive Vinaigrette

Rib-eye Steak:

1 2-inch rib-eye steak, boneless
1 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon herbes de Provence
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Black Olive Vinaigrette:

1/2 cup black olives, pitted
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

For the Rib-eye: Preheat your grill pan on medium high heat. Coat the beef with olive oil and sprinkle with the Herbs de Provence, salt, and pepper. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes a side until the meat is medium-rare, remove from heat, and allow to rest.

For the Black Olive Vinaigrette: Combine the olives, red wine vinegar, mustard, garlic, salt, and pepper in a blender and blend until mixed. In a small pitcher combine the olive oil and vegetable oil. Drizzle the oil into the blender with the machine running. Transfer the vinaigrette to a serving dish. Stir in the parsley and serve with the rib-eye.

Bean Soup with Ham

1 pound dry great Northern beans
8 cups water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 ham hock
1 cup chopped carrots
1/2 stalk celery, chopped
1 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon mustard powder
2 bay leaves
2 cups chopped ham
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper

Soak the beans overnight. Discard the water and add fresh water to pot.

Place on top of stove and bring the water and beans to a boil on high heat. Place the ham bone, carrots, celery, onion, garlic, mustard and bay leaves in the pot. Stir well, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 60 more minutes.

Remove ham bone and discard. Stir in the chopped ham and simmer for 30 more minutes. Season with ground white pepper to taste.

Chipotle Grilled Skirt Steak

2 lbs skirt steak
1/4 onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
Canned Chili en Adobo: 1-3 chipotle peppers + 2 tsp of adobo sauce (use more peppers if you like the heat)
1 Tbl chopped cilantro

Puree a single chipotle pepper (not the whole can) + 2 tsp of the adobo sauce with the onion, garlic, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper. Taste and add more chipotle if needed. Stir in the cilantro. Throw it all in a zip lock bag with the skirt steak for at least 2 hours. Grill medium-rare. Cut the skirt steak into thin strips across the grain.

Zucchini Rice Pilaf with Red Pepper

Ingredients

1/2 cup chopped zucchini
1/2 chopped red bell pepper
1 small red tomato
1/2 onion
1 TB olive oil
1 TB butter
1 cup Basmati Rice
1/2 cube chicken bouillon
1 1/2 cups water
2 TB Lemon Balm chopped fine
Pine nuts
Salt and Pepper
Pine nuts, optional

Directions

Coat the pan with the olive oil and butter. Add zucchini, red pepper and onion and sautee until al dente. Add chopped tomato and cook for one minute. You really want to render some pulp here to color and flavor the rice. Pour the rice, add the water and bouillon cube, salt and bring to a boil. Add the lemon balm and cover. Cook rice until done. Correct for salt and pepper. Sprinkle some freshly grated Parmesan Cheese and pine nuts , cover and let sit for about 5 minutes.

Tiramisu Icebox Cake

3 cups chilled heavy cream
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup mascarpone cheese (about 9 oz) at room temperature
1 (9-oz) box chocolate wafers such as Nabisco Famous
1 tablespoon instant-espresso powder

Beat 2 cups cream with 6 tablespoons sugar in a bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until it just holds soft peaks, 2 to 4 minutes. Reduce speed to low, then add mascarpone and mix until combined.

Spread 1 1/4 cups mascarpone mixture evenly in bottom of springform pan and cover with 14 wafers, slightly overlapping if necessary. Spread with another 1 1/4 cups mascarpone mixture, followed by 14 more wafers arranged in the same manner. Spread remaining mascarpone mixture on top. Smooth top with a metal offset spatula, then cover pan with foil and freeze until firm, about 1 hour. Transfer from freezer to refrigerator and chill, covered, until a sharp knife inserted into center cuts through softened wafers easily, about 8 hours.

Pulse remaining chocolate wafers in a food processor until finely ground.

Beat remaining cup cream with espresso powder and remaining 3 tablespoons sugar using electric mixer at medium speed until it just holds stiff peaks, about 3 minutes.

Remove foil and side of pan and frost cake all over with espresso cream. Sprinkle edge of top lightly with wafer crumbs. Serve cold.

Cooks’ notes:

Cake, without espresso cream, can be chilled up to 2 days.
Cake can be frosted with espresso cream 4 hours ahead and chilled, loosely covered with foil.