An easy summer dinner salad

DINNER TONIGHT

August 17, 2005|By Carol Mighton Haddix | Carol Mighton Haddix,CHICAGO TRIBUNE

Take a tip from the Italians, who like to serve arugula in salads, on top of pizza, or under grilled or sauteed meat. The slightly bitter greens make a great contrast to rich foods. Baby arugula has a less-bitter flavor and more tender leaves.

We've teamed the greens with sliced strip steak for an easy summer dinner salad. Lemon, mustard and olive oil flavor the greens, and a topping of pecorino cheese, a hard sheep's milk cheese, finishes the dish.

This is a dish with endless variations. You could top the greens with grilled chicken or turkey slices, or with any leftover sliced roast. And vary the cheese as you wish; parmesan or goat cheese would work well.

Tips

If you dislike the bitter arugula greens, try any mixed greens or baby spinach.

If you have time, you also can grill the steaks.

Beverage suggestion

A nice dry Italian red would go well with the steak and garlic bread. Try a rosso di Montalcino, a Tuscan wine made from the brunello grape.

Menu

Marinated olives

Rib steaks with arugula salad

Garlic bread

Sliced peaches with vanilla yogurt

Rib Steaks With Arugula Salad

Preparation time: 10 minutes; cooking time: about 14 minutes

Makes 4 servings

2 rib steaks, about 12 ounces each, trimmed

2 cloves garlic, halved

1 tablespoon cracked pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon olive oil

SALAD:

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon salt

freshly ground pepper

1 bag (5 ounces) baby arugula

1/4 cup grated pecorino cheese (divided use)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Rub the steaks on both sides with cut garlic; season with pepper and salt. Heat a large, ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil; heat. Add steaks; cook to brown, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer skillet to oven; cook to desired doneness, about 8 minutes for medium.

Meanwhile, for the salad, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, mustard, salt and pepper to taste in a small bowl. Place the arugula in a large bowl; toss with the dressing to taste. Sprinkle with some of the cheese; toss.

Slice the steaks on a cutting board. Divide salad among 4 plates; top with steak slices. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Per serving: 645 calories; 55 grams fat; 18 grams saturated fat; 115 milligrams cholesterol; 4 grams carbohydrate; 33 grams protein; 635 milligrams sodium; 1 grams fiber

- Recipe and analysis from the Chicago Tribune, a Tribune Publishing newspaper

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