Craving Mad 150: Surf & Turf

One-hundred-fifty posts, over three years–not bad, huh? CM has been around since 2017, but the ideas go back way farther. Despite some occasional gaps, it has survived moves, job changes, classes, weddings…and now a pandemic. I’ve managed to get a few weeks ahead, and the ideas keep flowing. Still–I can’t believe that there are 149 other posts out there…Thanks for sticking around.

I thought a lot about what to make for the 150th post– but between everything going on, the limited places I can shop, and my commitment to come up with something worthy of the occasion…it took a while. Enter Surf & Turf. Somehow, I didn’t even think of doing this until last week. It’s a little decadent, but think of it as homage to that random golden era of cheap gas and seafood we saw a few months ago. Take an hour to turn off the news, and smell the browned butter and rosemary.

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You’ll usually see filet mignon used for this– but that cut is a little too expensive for comfort right now. I used top sirloin here instead. Regardless, you have to treat it right– pat it dry, season well, and let it rest uncovered in the refrigerator for a few hours. The salt will draw out excess moisture and cure the outer layer–gifting you the perfect foundation for a hard sear. Once you take it out of hibernation, let it come up to room temperature on the counter, and heat up a heavy pan. Sear both sides, then finish with butter, and fresh rosemary. Baste with a spoon (like you see on TV), and cook to your desired temperature. Make sure you let it rest before serving, too.

Meanwhile, I had parsnips, and garlic roasting until browned. Once that was done, I added some roasted cashews, and pureed it–yeah, I’m really going for it this week. It took some adjustments, but I finally got the right texture with some added butter and cream. Season it the way you’d season mashed potatoes. You’d be surprised how similarly this turns out.

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Finally for the surf, I added lump crab to a sauté of spinach and artichoke– right at the end. It’s already cooked, so you just need to stir until its warm–then season to taste.

So…150 down, but can I go for another 150? Who knows– there is definitely a lot more food to come though: The Basics will cover everything from choosing spices, to making sauce; I’m sure there will be another challenge before the end of the year, and more collabs to get Breaking Bread off the ground as well. Stay tuned…

In the meantime, though– let’s cook.

You’ll need:

2 Top Sirloin Steaks

1 Cup Lump Crab

4-6 Parsnips, chopped

2 Artichoke Hearts, pre-cooked

1 Head of Garlic

4 Cups Spinach

1 Cup Roasted Cashews

3 Sprigs Rosemary

3 Tbs Butter

2 Tbs Heavy Cream

2 Tbs Olive Oil

1 Tbs Capers

1 Tbs Coriander Seeds

1 Tbs Garlic Powder

1 Tbs Onion Powder

1 Tsp Allspice

1 Tsp Dried Thyme

1 Tsp Dried Rosemary

Salt & Pepper to taste

  1. Pat the steaks dry with paper towel, then season evenly with salt, pepper, allspice, and dried herbs. Transfer to a baking sheet on top off a layer of wood/bamboo skewers to allow moisture to escape. Refrigerate uncovered for up to six hours.
  2. Chop the parsnips, and garlic for roasting. drizzle with olive oil, then season with salt. Roast at 400 degrees until brown, flipping as needed.
  3. Remove the steak from the refrigerator, and leave on the counter for thirty minutes. Sear in a heavy pan on medium-high heat, flip, then add half of the butter, and fresh herbs. Baste as needed until the steak reaches your desired temperature.
  4. Combine parsnips, garlic, cashews remaining butter, and heavy cream in a blender. Puree with olive oil as needed, and season to taste.
  5. Finally, Sauté artichoke, spinach, and any remaining garlic until the spinach wilts. Stir in lump crab and capers. Taste for seasoning, and remove from the heat.
  6. Plate and serve.

Done.

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