Santa Barbara is not home to one stop shopping. We have an obscene amount of things working in our favor— weather, beautiful architecture, gardens, beaches, and occasional Rob Lowe sightings, shall I go on? But convenient shopping is not one of them. I ping pong my way up and down the 101 trying to fulfill simple grocery lists.
Even in paradise, busy schedules are the norm and I’m always looking for short cuts. A beloved shortcut is our little village grocer in Montecito. Conveniently located midpoint between home and school, it’s what my friend Hollye calls over at The Silver Pen, “a silver lining.”
Because it’s privately owned, it isn’t tied to the big grocery “must buy on the distribution list ma’am.” We can (and do) ask for all sorts of items that we locals would like to see on the shelves (and yes, at premium prices, but remember the shortcut part of the story?)—from gluten-free crackers, to Cow Girl Creamery cheese, San Danielle prosciutto, quality vanilla extract and of course, what this blog is really about: the flat iron steak—you knew I would get there, right?
After all this heat, my garden is busting at the seams with veg and a little protein is all it takes to make dinner come together.
Flat iron steak is easy to prepare and packed with flavor. The steak comes vacuum packed in plastic, which gives me a little flexibility—I don’t have to make it the exact day I buy it. Having it in the fridge keeps me from ordering pizza, again, in the middle of a busy week.
Flat Iron Steak (Family Meal)
3 lb flat iron steak
2 tsp salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
4 herb sprigs, fresh oregano or thyme
Salt & pepper each side of the meat and rub in the garlic; then smear 1 tablespoon Dijon on each side. In a cast iron skillet, add butter and oil. Heat the pan for about 3 minutes until butter and oil are bubbling. Place steak on the skillet and cook on med/high heat for 5 minutes, flip and cook an additional 5 minutes.
This recipe is for medium rare. If you like it more well done, cook it longer. Let the steak rest for about five minutes with the herb springs on top. While the meat rests make a quick pan sauce by adding a splash of white or red wine, a teaspoon more of dijon, a tablespoon of butter and any remaining juices from the meat. Whisk to incorporate and pour over the steak. Tear a few the leaves off the stem of the herbs and sprinkle on top . This is also delicious served with my go to salsa verde. Slice meat against the grain before serving.