Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Anyone for Seconds?

Fettina alla Salmoriglio al Limone, con Peperoni Glassate
Thinly Sliced Flank Steak with Lemon Salmoriglio Sauce and Glazed Peppers

Let's presume we are preparing an Italian meal for our friends. We will have some simple antipasti- olives, prosciutti or salumi say and then a small pasta or risotto dish. You can manage that, right?  But what about a secondo? Something that will be a real treat, but not something that is going to be overkill and simply too much food. We may actually even still be contemplating dessert...

So here is a nice, simple and quick idea for you- we are talking 10 minutes here! Cheap, fast absolutely mouthwatering- this traditional Sicilian preparation for a paper-thin flank steak will be a great highlight that costs you no stress or hard work. Oh... so now you want to know how to make it, huh? Yeah... I thought you might!

The only preparation you are going to need to do is a bit of chopping- but that really is all! I used red pointed peppers which I cut into fine rings/slices, but you can use any kind that you prefer. I also finely chopped a little garlic and finely sliced some lemon zest. But that's about it boys and girls! From now on it is going to be plain sailing...

I fried the peppers in a very small amount of olive oil at a moderate heat, stirring constantly and seasoning with salt, pepper and a good pinch of sugar. After 4-5 minutes, the peppers should be nicely softened up, but still have a good bit of bite to them and the sugar will be combining nicely with the juices from the peppers to become a nice glaze... just the pure and natural flavor of the peppers themselves- but what more do you need? Mmmmm... delicious!

Next, take another frying pan and get it nice and hot. You are going to need a few ingredients and you are going to need to move fast- so make sure you have them close at hand- as the meat is cut so thinly that just a minute or two too long in the pan will ruin it and turn it into edible shoe leather. So, you will need the finely chopped garlic, some Herbs de Provence, sea salt, pepper, the juice of a lemon, a little honey and the lemon zest and and a little fresh oregano to finish it all off. This is going to take you all of 2 minutes- so get your nerves ready!

Add a splash of olive oil into the pan and as soon as it begins to shimmer and is really hot, add the meat. Sprinkle immediately with salt, pepper, the herbs and the garlic and then flip it over and do the same, adding a handful of capers at the same time. You need to have the heat up really high so that the meat browns quickly, but you don't want it to cook too much as it is so thin that it will dry out before you know it. Squeeze immediately with the lemon juice- and plenty of it, add a tablespoon of honey and stir it around a little to get all of the good flavor up from the pan. And serve it up immediately!

Traditionally it would be served "as is", but I thought that the topping of sweet peppers, the savory capers, the zingy oregano and the "bitter" lemon zest would take this simple preparation up to the next level... And I was right! You should give it a try some time!


  1. Very pretty, and I'm sure really delicious! Just shows that you can always find something fresh and wonderful to make in as little time it takes to heat up packaged food...

    1. Absolutely right Frank! I see we are both on the same page of the book! Glad you like it and always happy hearing from you! Best wishes- Francesco