A quick stop to The Butcher’s Block on 17th Street in Sarasota helps me create a steakhouse worthy dish for our company this weekend. One stop shopping for aged rib eye steaks, Maytag bleu cheese, craft beers and corn on the cob. Even the tomatoes and romaine are right there for your complete meal.
- Smoked paprika
- Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
- 2 rib-eye steaks, 1 to 1-1/4 inches thick
- 1 head romaine lettuce
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- 1 large ripe tomato, chopped
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Maytag Bleu cheese crumbled as garnish
Mix the kosher salt, paprika and pepper together in a small bowl. Pat the steaks dry and season them on both sides with the salt blend. Let them sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
Slice the romaine in half lengthwise, wash it by swishing each half in a large bowl of cool water to rinse out the dirt between the leaves. Place the halves cut side down in a large colander to drain.
In a small saucepan, combine the olive oil with the garlic and tomato. Cook over low heat until the oil shimmers and the garlic smells fragrant. Remove the pan from the heat to a warm spot while you prepare a charcoal or gas grill for high heat. Scrape the grate clean and oil it lightly.
Use a pastry brush to lightly coat the romaine halves with some of the tomato oil and place them cut side down on the outer edges of the grill. Grill the romaine until the cut sides are burnished with grill marks and the outer leaves are wilted. Cut out the core, slice each half into quarters, and set it aside.
Grill the steaks over the hottest part of the grill for 3 to 3-1/2 minutes, then use tongs to flip them and grill for 3 to 3-1/2 minutes on the second side. Check for doneness (125 degrees for rare, 130 degrees for medium-rare) and remove them from the grill (or, slide them to the coolest part of the grill to cook over indirect heat to medium or beyond).
Transfer the steaks to a cutting board. While they rest (the internal temperature will rise a bit), make the tomato vinaigrette by whisking the lemon juice and salt into the reserved tomato oil. Slice the steaks against the grain 1/2 inch thick. Place a wedge of romaine and 4 to 5 slices of steak on each plate and spoon the tomato vinaigrette over all with a grind of black pepper to taste. Top with crumbled Maytag bleu cheese