Thursday, 14 November 2013


We were meant to be going to Gola tonight for another truffle fest with friends but it has been postponed until next weekend. We ummed and ahhhed about going to our local Spanish restaurant but then decided to be good, save money and cook at home. I had cut out this recipe from a magazine last year as I love steak with a twist - such as a peppercorn sauce, a blue cheese crust or steak Diane - however as Pascal likes his steak plain and blue we had never cooked it before . Luckily he was in a very good mood today and happy to try something new!

We'd had a really busy day buying Christmas presents at Bicester village - that place is Heaven on earth - and by the time we got home we were exhausted so we wanted something quick and easy. This was definitely quick although not the easiest!!

Ingredients for 2 people:

130g finely grated Parmesan
cracked black pepper & salt
4 x 100g thin beef minute steaks
vegetable oil for frying
25g butter (optional)
8 cloves of garlic peeled and sliced 
1 tbsp lemon zest
600g baby spinach leaves

Surprise surprise - start by preheating the oven! Just at a low temperature, about 120 C, this is to keep the steaks warm while cooking the spinach.

Combine the Parmesan and pepper and place in a flat shallow dish. Then press both sides of the steak firmly into the Parmesan mixture. This is the part I found difficult, no matter how much I pressed the steak into the cheese, it didn't really "stick". In hindsight maybe I should have put a bit of oil on the steaks first or mixed a raw egg with the Parmesan? If anyone has any ideas it would be greatly appreciated?!

Anyway I resolved the issue by just pouring the cheese on top of the steaks!

Heat a splash of vegetable oil in a large non stick frying pan over a high heat and then cook the steaks for about 30 seconds each side. 

Place on a plate / dish and put in the oven to keep warm.

In the same frying pan add some butter if you need/want it and cook the garlic and lemon zest until the garlic is golden, we didn't add butter as I was trying to save on calories but I am sure it would make the spinach taste even more delicious. Then add the spinach and some more salt and pepper and cook until the spinach is wilted. I didn't read the recipe properly (doh) and put the spinach in at the same time as the garlic so the garlic didn't have time to cook - a minor error but not the end of the world - (I had been trying to do Arabella's spelling at the same time and wasn't concentrating)!

The spinach literally takes a couple of minutes and then serve it with the steaks and enjoy!

You could obviously add fries or saute potatoes as well but we were being carb-free (I am off to Shake Shack tomorrow where I intend to eat my body weight in cheese covered fries)!

The steaks were good - they are thin and lean and the strong taste of the Parmesan really adds flavour and it goes very well with the garlic spinach which I have to say is one of my favourite sides. Plus it is filling, we really did not miss having some kind of potato with it.

It was not the most stress-free recipe (there were a few cross words while cooking) as it is all so quick and is also messy when the Parmesan doesn't stick to the steak, but it is a very fast favour-packed dinner and it is something different. I would not recommend cooking it for a large group of people as you would have to cook the steaks in batches but I think it is perfect for just the two of you or even if it is just for one - way more exciting than beans on toast and probably takes the same amount of time!!!

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