Delicious, simple, sophisticated and very easy to throw together with it’s short list of ingredients. This salad is heavier on greens than on steak, making it a light but filling meal. With only one steak to be divvied up between 2-4 people, make sure you buy a top-notch thick ribeye. Often the crown jewel of the steakhouse menu, a well-prepared ribeye steak is a beautiful thing.
The ribeye’s high-fat content offers generous marbling, and therefore, the meat has more moisture to cook with. Where the flavor comes from in a good piece of meat is from the fat, and no other cut of meat has the amount of fat that a ribeye does. So unless you are a “fat-o-phobe” this Watercress Salad with Steak, Sautéed Shallots & Stilton recipe could be your next “save-the-day” weeknight meal.
You may see ribeye referred to in several ways, like ribeye or rib eye and rib steak. Don’t get too hung up on the names; the ribeye has many but they all generally refer to the same cut. The cut is from the rib roast, which usually includes rib bone. But, to become a ribeye cut, the bone is usually removed before cooking, leaving the tender, flavorful part to enjoy.
First, regardless of technique being used, pull your ribeye out of the refrigerator and let it sit out for fifteen minutes. Then after cooking, once your desired temperature is achieved (130–135º for medium rare, 135–140º for medium), let the steak rest ten minutes before you cut into it as this allows the meat to retain the juices and prevents drying out the meat.
This type of salad I usually reserve for warmer weather, but we’ve also served it on cool temperature days, so it can be part of your weeknight dinner rotation in the early Spring or even mid-Autumn—I like that flexibility.
Watercress Salad with Steak, Sautéed Shallots and Stilton
- 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
- Kosher salt
- 14- to 16-oz. ribeye (1-inch thick)
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 4 large shallots, sliced 1/4 inch thick (about 1-1/2 cups)
- 6 cups (lightly packed) small watercress sprigs (about 2 bunches trimmed of lower stems), torn into bite-size pieces
- 2 oz. Stilton, crumbled (about 1/2 cup)
- In a small bowl, whisk 2 Tbs. of the olive oil, the lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, and a generous pinch of salt. Season both sides of the steak with 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper.
- In a 10-inch straight-sided sauté pan, heat the remaining 1 Tbs. oil over medium-high heat until hot. Cook the steak, without disturbing, swirling the oil in the pan occasionally, until the bottom of the steak is deeply browned, about 5 minutes.
- Flip and cook until the other side is nicely browned, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the steak to a cutting board.
- Turn the heat to low and cook the shallots, stirring frequently, until softened and lightly browned, 5 to 8 minutes. (Use a spatula or spoon to break apart the shallot slices and to incorporate some of the browned bits from the pan.) Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
- Slice the beef thinly. Fan an equal number of slices on each dinner plate. Rewhisk the dressing if necessary.
- In a large bowl, toss the shallots, watercress, and Stilton with a generous pinch of salt and just enough of the dressing to coat.
- Season with more salt and pepper and arrange the salad over the beef slices.
Adapted by a recipe by Susie Middleton from Fine Cooking