One would think, given that this blog is about what I eat, that I’ve been STARVING lately, since I haven’t posted anything in weeks. Alas, it’s graduation season here in Boston, which kicked in right after the Marathon Bombings and the subsequent city-wide lockdown to capture Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev. So “getting back to normal” required getting over the shock of terrorists hiding in backyard boats and getting past processions of dignitaries and fresh graduates to the glorious month of June. Of course, I haven’t been starving, but I’ve not cooked as much as I usually do because of all the crazy crazy, nor have I had the time to post. But all that’s over, and I’m back in the saddle, and happy to offer you – dear readers – a dinner truly worth this call back to action. This is dedicated to my dear friend, Leslie, for whom I first prepared this meal and from whom the main ingredients came straight from Hawaii — to whence she has now returned to attend medical school. I miss you, sweetie!
Kona Encrusted Steak, Brown Sugar Kona Mushroom Gravy, Arugula, Caprese, and Red Onion Salad
2 8oz strip or ribeye steaks
2 tbs ground kona coffee
2 cups fresh brewed kona coffee
1 lb baby bella mushrooms
1 qt beef broth
1 tbs brown sugar
1 tbs flour
2 tbs butter
1 boll burrata cheese
1 fresh tomato
1 red onion
EVOO, white vinegar, pink Alaea sea salt, crushed black pepper
Mushrooms weren’t part of the original recipe, but I thought they would absorb the coffee gravy nicely, and I wasn’t wrong. I slice up these baby bellas nice and thick.
I set the brown sugar into the glass ahead of time. John Stage from the Dinosaur BBQ taught me how to make coffee – by adding the hot liquid to the sugar and not the other way ’round – and I’ve never gone back.
As the gravy finishes off (see how reduced it is on the back burner there?), I cook off my steaks. Using the flip-once-a-minute technique, I sear each steak on alternating sides, until about 10 minutes have passed. This makes a perfect medium rare.
After whipping up a quick salad with arugula, tomato, burrata cheese, and slivered red onions, I serve my encrusted seared steak bathed in black Hawaiian coffee goodness. Each succulent, tender bite transports me to volcanic sand beaches, white-capped surfboarded waves, phalanxes of exotic women gyrating their hips accompanied by burly men beating large drums, and to romantic vistas peopled by the cast of Hawaii Five O. A word to the wise: don’t plan on taking any naps shortly after eating this meal; I was WIRED for HOURS post-consumption as all the kona-caffeine coursed through my veins. But that just gave me more time to savor all the amazing flavors this plate provided, for which I was incredibly grateful. Next time, though, I’m thinking this steak will be served with eggs and toast for breakfast…