Grilled Endive, Steak, and Tomato Salad with Homemade Ranch Dressing
1 grass-fed steak (I prefer rib-eye but you can use your favorite cut), about 1.5 inches thick/1 pound
2 cups halved "cherry" tomatoes, or chopped standard tomatoes (use heirloom tomatoes, if possible: I've been eating the ones I grow in my garden)
2 heads California endive (red or white, or both), root ends trimmed off
2 somewhat thin slices traditional sourdough bread or other sturdy whole-grain bread (or gluten-free bread)
Homemade ranch dressing (or the dressing of your choice, preferably homemade)
3/4 cup crème fraîche
3-4 tablespoons raw apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons cultured buttermilk
1 handful of fresh basil leaves
1 handful of fresh cilantro leaves
1 handful of fresh parsley leaves
2 medium cloves of garlic, sliced in half, plus more to taste (if you love garlic)
pinch of ground cayenne pepper--optional
sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1. Preheat gas grill to medium-high (or prepare charcoal grill for cooking over moderate direct heat).
2. Pat steak dry. Rub with olive oil and then season both sides with course salt and fresh pepper. Drizzle endive and bread slices with a little olive oil.
3. Grill steak for approximately 4-5 minutes on each side. Grill the endive heads whole for about 4 minutes total, or until softened (use tongs to turn half-way through cooking). Grill the bread slices very briefly (watch that they do not burn).
4. Transfer steak to a cutting board and let stand 5-10 minutes, tented with foil, before slicing crosswise into thin slices (you can then cut the slices into even smaller pieces, if you like). Allow endive and bread slices to cool, as well, then chop the endive and break the bread sliced into bite-sized chunks.
5. In a large bowl, combine the chopped steak, the tomatoes, the chopped endive, and the bread chunks. Toss the salad with enough dressing to coat. Season the salad with salt and pepper, taste, and add more dressing, if you like. Divide salad evenly into two bowls and serve (or eat the whole thing yourself, if you're super hungry).
Combine all ingredients except cayenne pepper, sea salt, and black pepper in a blender. Blend until the dressing is very smooth (or leave it a tiny bit chunky...your choice). Taste and adjust seasonings, and add the cayenne, salt, and pepper, if desired.
Winnie Abramson is one of five food bloggers associated with our OnDiva ambassadorship. She is the writer and recipe developer behind the food blog, Healthy Green Kitchen.