Mexican cuisine is one of my favorite foods, but it is not exactly the healthiest of choices. I am always trying to create recipes that are lighter on calories without losing flavor. Salads are a great option when choosing to eat lighter and if you are trying to increase your vegetable intake, they always make a great meal.
To prepare a good steak, you need to buy a quality cut of meat like fillet mignon or hanger steak, however fillet mignon can be a little pricey. Hanger steak, if cut properly (across the grain) can offer some of the same tender qualities as other expensive cuts.
To transform your beef into a Mexican treat – rub it with dried spices like; onion powder, chili powder and cumin. Searing beef in an extra hot iron or steel pan forms a crust on the outside of the beef that locks in the juices and gives the steak outstanding texture. Always cook your beef to your liking, just be sure not to overcook it.
The onions and peppers in this recipe turn into a caramelized companion and go so nicely with the hardy meat. This salad is easy to prepare and can be served warm, room temperature or cold – which makes it great for parties too.
6-8 ounces fillet mignon or hanger steak
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt + more for seasoning
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 medium red onion, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 jalapeno, sliced
5 cups of baby spinach leaves
3 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1/3 red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon agave nectar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
pinch of salt & pepper
1/2 cup vegetable oil + more for cooking
1. In a small bowl, combine onion powder, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Rub on both sides of steak. Drizzle 2 tablespoons oil in pan and heat on high for 2 minutes, or until lightly smoking. Place meat in pan and cook on first side for 4 minutes. Flip over and cook on the other side for 3 minutes, depending upon how you like your steak.
2. Remove steak from pan and rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes, while you saute vegetables. Place onions, peppers, 2 teaspoons oil in same saute pan, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook for 4 minutes, until crisp tender – yet slightly caramelized.
3. Place vinaigrette ingredients in a sealed jar and shake until combined. Place spinach in a large serving bowl and top with sauteed vegetables.
4. Slice steak thinly and place on top of vegetables. Top with cheese and drizzle with half of vinaigrette, serve remaining with salad. Enjoy!