Steak and Zucchini Tostadas - Sweet & Savory Kitchens

Margaux says…

I bought this recipe magazine on a whim 4 years ago while waiting in line at the supermarket, and it quickly became my most-used recipe book in the summer and fall. Every recipe I have made (and I have used almost all of them) have been fantastic. And they are super quick and easy. So, since I use this blog as my virtual recipe box and menu planner (along with Pinterest, of course), I thought I would post some of my favorites from the magazine, just in case someday it catches on fire from being too close to a burner, or accidentally gets dropped in the dishwater. Plus, you should try out these recipes, too! They’re great for a quick, easy and flavorful weeknight meal.
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I’m starting with the steak and zucchini tostadas. I don’t make these as often because we really don’t eat steak all that much (small business owner budget), but I have made this substituting lentil taco filling for the steak and it is also pretty good. My favorite lentil taco filling recipe is sort of a mash-up of my own taco seasoning and the lentil taco recipe from Budget Bytes.  Actually, I keep the lentil taco filling on hand in the freezer for whenever we have tacos, so I have it ready for my vegetarian son on taco nights.  But I digress….try these tostadas on your next taco night, you won’t be sorry.  Zucchini and steak is a great combo!

Steak and Zucchini Tostadas

adapted from America’s Test Kitchen 30-Minute Suppers, Fall 2010 edition

**To make this even quicker, you can buy already made tostada shells at the grocery store if your store carries them.  Here in Chicago there are a couple of different local brands that make them, and you can find them in the “Mexican” aisle.

12 (6-inch) corn tortillas

4 tbsp vegetable or canola oil

salt and pepper

1 small flank steak (or about 1 lb strip steak…I used that once because it’s what I had on hand)

2 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced thin

1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

1/2 cup lightly packed fresh cilantro leaves

1 lime, cut into wedges, for serving

1 recipe pico de gallo, for serving (recipe follows)

1. Adjust oven racks to lower-middle and upper middle positions and heat oven to 450 degrees.  Brush both sides of tortillas with 2 tablespoons oil and season with salt and pepper.  Lay tortillas in single layer on 2 baking sheets.  Bake until golden brown and crisp, rotating baking sheets and flipping tortillas halfway through, about 10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, pat beef dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.  Heat additional 1 tablespoon oil in large skillet over medium high heat until just smoking.  Cook beef until well browned and it registers 125 degrees (for medium-rare), 4 to 6 minutes per side.  Transfer to cutting board and tent with foil.

3. Add remaining oil and zucchini to skillet and cook until tender, about 4 minutes.

4. Cut beef in half lengthwise, then very thinly slice beef crosswise against grain.  Divide beef and zucchini equally among tostadas.  Top with feta and cilantro.  Serve with lime wedges and pico de gallo.

Pico de Gallo

3 cored, seeded and diced plum tomatoes

1/2 red onion, finely chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 jalepenos, seeded and minced (leave more of the seeds for more heat)

juice from 2 limes

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.  Season with salt and pepper.

 

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Margaux says . . . . .

Suzy recommended this recipe to me a while ago, when she posted the recipe for salmon with mango salsa.  I thought mango salsa on steak sounded really interesting, and of course I’ll take any excuse to make steak!  This recipe is really delicious, and we will definitely be making it again.  I also think it would be fun to make both the salmon and the steak sometime when we have company…a little of both with the salsa sounds really good to me. I served it with one of my favorite side dishes, green rice (see recipe below).

The recipe for the steak rub said that it can be made with toasted dried ancho, pasilla or guajillo peppers, but that regular chili powder would work, too. I used regular chili powder because I thought it would be less spicy for my little guy, and it was what I had on hand. It was very tasty…probably not as tasty as the other, but if it’s what you have on hand, I say go for it.


For the steak:

Prepare a hot charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill on high.  You can also make this indoors in your oven’s broiler.  If broiling, position the pan 4-5 inches from the heating element.

2 tablespoons ground dried red chili peppers

2 tablespoons cracked black peppercorns

1 1/2 tablespoons ground cumin

1 1/2 tablespoons Kosher salt

1 beef flank steak, about 1 1/2 pounds

Combine the spices in a small bowl and blend thoroughly.  Pat the spice mixture onto the entire surface of the steak.  Grill or broil for 4-6 minutes per side for medium-rare.  Make a small incision to check the center.  The interior should be slightly less done than desired as it will continue to cook off the heat.  When cooked to desired doneness, remove from the heat and let stand for 5 minutes.  Note that this steak should not be cooked more than medium. Thinly slide the steak across the grain and serve immediately topped with mango salsa.

For the salsa:

1 small red onion, chopped, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 large ripe mango, peeled, pitted and coarsely chopped
1 small red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
1 fresh jalapeno or other small chili pepper, finely chopped
salt and cracked black peppercorns to taste

Mix together the onion and lime juice in a large bowl and set aside. Prepare the remaining ingredients, setting them aside, then add them all together to the onion mixture. Stir together well. Will keep, covered and refrigerated, for one day.

Green Rice

Cook 1 cup Basmati rice according to directions – you can use white or brown rice. When rice is done and resting, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon unsalted butter in a Dutch oven. Add 1-2 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced, and sauté 2 minutes, until fragrant. Stir in and cook over medium high heat a total of 5 cups coarsely chopped greens – arugula, spinach, beet tops, watercress, parsley, etc. Cook until just wilted. Stir the rice into the greens and blend well. We usually make double the recipe!