Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A Honey of a Father's Day Meal

It's all honey all the time for this Father's Day meal! Maybe your dad is already sweet and so one (or two) of these dishes might do the trick. The honey in the steak and the potatoes is not that overpowering, though--so the entire meal is one that even an already sweet dad would enjoy. These dishes all serve about four people.

We adapted this recipe from Lynne Rosetto Kasper and Sally Swift's How to Eat Supper cookbook. You can check out the original recipe on Rosetto Kasper's Splendid Table website.

3 tablespoons dry red wine
3 tablespoons honey--the fall honey is fantastic with this, but summer honey also works well
3 large garlic cloves, smashed
freshly ground black pepper (about 1 teaspoon)
olive oil
1-1/2 to 2 pounds steak (about 1-1/4 or 1-1/2 inches thick--get it from McElhaney's!)
kosher salt
more freshly ground pepper

Combine the wine, honey and garlic cloves and pepper and pour over steak. Let it marinate while you make the rest of the meal. Coat the bottom of a frying pan with olive oil and heat over medium high heat. Pat the steak dry with a paper towel and add to the pan. Let it sear on one side for about 3 minutes, while you sprinkle the top with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Turn and cook 3 minutes more, sprinkling with more salt and pepper. Turn heat to medium low and cook, turning for about 2 or 3 more minutes until internal temperature is between 125 and 130 for medium rare. (This splatters a lot, so be prepared for the mess.) Let steak rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. You can thinly slice and use this for sandwiches if you'd like. Two pounds serves four people.

1 pound small new potatoes
2 tablespoons melted butter (or olive oil or peanut oil--or 1/2 butter and 1/2 oil)
3 tablespoons honey (spring or summer)
1 tablespoon dry mustard (or 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper flakes)
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Scrub new potatoes and place in a pot of salted water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook for no more than 5 minutes. Drain, return to pot and shake over the flame to dry potatoes and get them ready to roast.

Combine the butter (or oil), honey and mustard (or cayenne pepper). Pour over potatoes in the pot and toss to coat well.

Line a rimmed cookie sheet with aluminum foil (this will save clean up time!). Pour coated potatoes onto cookie sheet, and spread out, giving them lots of room. Sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper, being sure each potato gets a nice dose of salt and pepper. Roast in oven for 35 to 50 minutes, shaking pan after about 15 minutes and then at least once again. Begin testing to see if they're done at 35 minutes and keep roasting until a paring knife easily slides in (and out).

1 pound fresh spinach, washed and dried
1 crisp green apple (like a Granny Smith), chopped
1/4 cup walnuts, toasted
1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese

Toss together. When ready to serve, toss with Honey Poppy Seed Salad Dressing (recipe follows)

2/3 cup honey (summer honey works best here)
2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon poppy seeds
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated onion
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
Combine everything but the olive oil in a food processor. While the processor is running, slowly pour in the olive oil until all is emulsified. Just before serving, pour about 1/4 on the salad and toss. Add more dressing as needed. Serve extra dressing on the side.

for the strawberries:
2 cups strawberries, cleaned and hulled (and sliced or halved, if large)
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/8 cup honey (summer honey is best)
Combine and set aside while you make the shortcakes.

for the biscuits
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter
1/4 cup spring (or summer) honey
2-3 tablespoons whole milk, plus more for tops of biscuits.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Whisk flour, baking powder and salt together. Cut butter into flour mixture until it's about the size of peas. Combine 2 tablespoons of milk with the honey. Pour over flour and gingerly combine (I use my hands for this). Add another tablespoon of milk if you need to--you want the dough to just barely come together. On a floured surface, pat dough out into a rough square (about 6 by 9 inches). Cut into six squares. If you'd like, you can cut the squares into triangles. Place on an ungreased baking sheet, being sure sides don't touch. Brush tops with some additional milk. Bake for about 10 minutes until tops brown.

To serve, split warm biscuits, top with strawberries. Serve with sweetened whipped cream (beat 1/4 cup of whipping cream with 1/8th cup of honey) or vanilla ice cream (or some plain yogurt sweetened with a little--you knew this was coming, right?  honey!).

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