that's forking good

adventures in a culinary neophyte's kitchen

avocado spinach salad

Posted by culinaryneophyte on February 12, 2012

Looking back over my last few posts, it’s hard to believe I haven’t spent the last week in a sugar coma. To get back to the savory side of things, I’m sharing this steak and avocado spinach salad with warm mustard vinaigrette. This is an easy weeknight meal whose leftovers can be easily morphed into a satisfying lunch. It also works well as a vegetarian dish by nixing the steak.

♦5 oz. baby spinach (fresh or bagged)
1 ripened avocado
1/2 lb. London broil (or chicken breast, if you prefer)
1 tbs. McCormick’s barbecue seasoning
salt and pepper
3 tbs. olive oil
2 tsp. sesame seeds
1 tbs. lemon juice
2 tsp. spicy mustard
Optional: 2 tbs. bacon bits 

Season meat with McCormick’s and salt. Let rest for 10 minutes, then sear on medium-high heat for two minutes per side (or longer for well done). Remove from heat, and slice just before dressing the salad (see below).

While steak is cooking, wash spinach leaves and gently pat dry.  Place in a large bowl. Cut avocado, remove seed and cut into slices. Heat one tablespoon olive oil over medium-low heat. Add sesame seeds and cook until golden. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Add lemon juice, remaining oil and mustard to mixture.

Add sliced steak to salad. Pour dressing over salad and gently toss. Serve warm.

Total time? 17 minutes prep (includes 10 minutes rest for meat).
Cost? $2 London broil, $1.50 avocado, $2 baby spinach, $3.29 sesame seeds.
Overall success relative to expectations? 9 out 10. I’m not a big salad person — or a steak person, for that matter — but I loved this. The juicy bits of steak, creamy avocado and tangy mustard vinaigrette worked really well together. I threw in some bacon bits for a crunch, but they’re not necessary. You can also substitute steak for chicken, or nix the meat altogether. This recipes makes enough for two, but if you’re planning for leftovers, reserve some steak and vinaigrette for the next day and warm them both separately before adding to the salad. Also, throw a little lemon juice on the avocado to keep its color.

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