This red wine-rosemary marinade is one of my favorite ways to prepare steak. It's easy to prep, uses ingredients that I almost always have on hand, and perfectly seasons the steak every time. Here I’ve included my riff on a classic steakhouse salad. The best part: when you cut your steak into bite-sized pieces, a little juice spills out and creates a delicious, impromptu salad dressing. Plan to buy extra steak and salad ingredients when you make this dish -- leftovers make a fabulous steak sandwich on toasted ciabatta. —EmilyC
Test Kitchen Notes
A long soak in the savory marinade with fresh rosemary made for a tender and flavorful flank steak. The watercress was a delightful choice for the greens and its peppery bite married well with the dressing, the onions, tomatoes and blue cheese. We had never eaten watercress before. My husband asked for seconds and claimed the recipe a keeper. That’s always a good thing. - Susige —Susige
For the marinade and steak
¼ cup red wine
1 T balsamic vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
1 T fresh rosemary leaves, minced
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 T kosher salt
½ tsp red pepper flakes, or more to taste
2 lb steak (flank, skirt, or hanger recommended)
For the salad and vinaigrette
4 large handfuls watercress
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
4 oz blue cheese, crumbled
1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
2 T red wine vinegar
2 T balsamic vinegar
½ tsp honey
¼ tsp red pepper flakes
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt + freshly ground black pepper, to taste
To marinate the steak:
In a small bowl, whisk together the red wine, vinegar, olive oil, rosemary, garlic, salt, and red pepper flakes. Place the steak in a non-reactive dish and pour in the marinade, turning a few times to evenly coat both sides. Cover and refrigerate 4 to 8 hours.
To grill the steak:
Remove the steak from the refrigerator and allow to sit (still in the marinade) at room temperature for about 40 minutes before grilling. Meanwhile, prep your grill for direct cooking over medium-high heat. Brush your grates clean. Remove the steak from its marinade. Grill the steak until cooked to your desired doneness, about 4 to 5 minutes on each side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for at about 10 minutes while you prep the salad. Thinly slice against the grain (no larger than 1/4" slices).
To make the vinaigrette:
Whisk together the vinegars, honey and red pepper flakes in a bowl. Gradually whisk in the olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
To assemble salad and serve: Right before serving, combine the watercress, red onions, and tomatoes in large bowl. (Optional: before adding the red onion slices, you can soak them in a bowl of cold water for about 5 minutes to remove their bite.) Add the vinaigrette, a little at a time, until your salad is lightly and evenly dressed; you will likely have leftover vinaigrette. Taste for seasoning. Divide the salad evenly among 4 large dinner plates, top with blue cheese crumbles and slices of flank.