New York Strip with a Mixed Melon Salad
This will always be a favorite dish of mine, to either cook or eat. I love the simple elegance I get from just a few unconventionally combined flavors. This dish just goes to prove that the right combination of a few ingredients executed correctly can be just as, if not more complex than, any dish whose ingredients read like a two-trolley-load shopping list.
If you plan to serve this for your dinner beginning course, it’s best to prep it in the morning. I usually prep/marinade my meats first thing when I make croissants, muffins, fruit platter, etc. The salad can be completed whenever you have an opportunity. Feeds 8-12 guests, depending on portion size.
Steak and Rub/Marinade
4 16 oz. New York strip steaks
4 tbsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp garlic powder
2 tbsp crushed pepper
2 tbsp cumin
2 tbsp kosher salt
6 tbsp sweet chili
Cut the fat off the steak, then cut the tip and toe at right angles so the steak resembles a rectangular block. Cut the sides of the strip in the same fashion as you did the ends so you have nice right angles. (See photo.)
In a bowl, add remaining rub ingredients. Mix well.
Apply the rub/paste to each steak vigorously. Leave no surface untouched.
Place on baking pan, wrap tightly and refrigerate until 1 hour before service.
When ready to cook, heat a nonstick pan to medium-high.
Spray steak with cooking spray and add 2 tbsp olive oil to the pan.
Cook the steak 45 seconds to 1 minute on each of the 4 sides, obtaining a nice sear on each.
Sear the tips and toes of the steaks and place in a oven at 400 degrees F for about 10 minutes for medium rare. (Each oven is different, so keep an eye on them.)
Remove steak and let rest 3-5 minutes on a chopping board.
1/4 cantaloupe melon
1/4 honeydew melon
1 red pepper
3 green onion
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 lemon, squeezed
Salt and pepper to taste
Deseed and remove skin of melons. Apply a brunoise dice (fine small dice) to both melons and set in a bowl.
Deseed pepper. Remove any remaining pith and also apply a brunoise dice. Keeping it the same size as the melon. Add to bowl.
Split the green onions lengthwise and then split again. Chop finely and add to bowl.
Add lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper to taste, and mix.
Cover and refrigerate until plating.
Micro chives, or regular chives cut in ½-inch segments
Kecap manis (reduced sweet soy) in small squeeze bottle for easier application
Chive oil (1 bunch chives, 1 clove garlic and 1 cup extra virgin olive oil, blended and strained)
Spoon the salad on the plate. Be creative. I generally design a long line of salad for the steak to rest on in the middle of a rectangular white or black slate plate.
Slice ¼-inch slices of the steak and place atop the salad. (Steaks will be nicely rested and have retained their juices, so bleeding won’t be an issue.)
Place some micro chives and/or flowers sporadically around the dish with some drizzle of reduced soy and chive oil.
Mark Godbeer, a culinary-trained chef from South Africa, has been professionally cooking for more than 11 years, 9 of which have been on yachts. Comments on this recipe are welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org.