5 Ingredients or Fewer

Marinated Steak With Almost Caesar Salad

May 27, 2019
3 Ratings
Photo by Bobbi Lin
  • Prep time 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Cook time 10 minutes
  • Serves 2 to 4
Author Notes

Caesar dressing ingredient lists love to be long-winded, but this one gets straight to the point: anchovies, Parmesan, and lemon juice—plus pantry staples, olive oil and black pepper. Blitz these up in a food processor and you get a super easy Caesar (even without the egg yolk, garlic, Worcestershire, and friends). In this case, it is both a dressing for crispy-crunchy romaine, and a marinade for flank steak. I love serving this with crusty bread. (If you’re feeling ambitious, you could even serve it with garlic bread.) —Emma Laperruque

What You'll Need
  • 3 ounces Parmesan, chopped into big chunks
  • 1 (2-ounce) can anchovy fillets, drained
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 12 ounces flank steak
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 2 romaine hearts, chopped
  • Lemon cheeks, for serving
  1. Add the Parmesan to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the Parmesan is extremely finely ground (sort of like the pre-grated Parmesan you’d buy at the supermarket). Dump into a bowl, then transfer 2 tablespoons to a smaller bowl for later.
  2. Add the anchovies to the food processor (no need to wash it out first), then process until the anchovies are minced, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the lemon juice, black pepper, and olive oil. Process until smooth. Add the larger bowl’s worth of Parmesan. Process again until smooth. It should be creamy, almost like mayonnaise.
  3. Season the steak lightly with salt and pepper, then add to a plastic bag. Add ⅓ cup of the Caesar dressing to the bag and close, making it as airtight as possible. (The rest of the marinade will become our salad dressing.) Massage the bag for a minute, so the marinade gets all over the steak, then stick it in the fridge. (You can also add the steak and marinade to a baking dish or bowl, massage, then cover.) Marinate for at least 4 hours or up to 12.
  4. When you’re ready to cook the steak, heat a grill pan (or cast-iron skillet) on the stove over medium-high heat. Remove the steak from the bag and use an offset spatula or the back of a butter knife to remove as much marinade as possible from the steak (if there’s too much, it can burn in the pan and prevent the steak from properly browning). Throw away the marinade. Lightly season the steak with salt and pepper. Add the canola oil to the hot pan, then add the steak. Cook it for about 5 minutes per side for medium-rare (or in the 130° to 135°F range on an instant-read thermometer).
  5. Let the steak rest for a few minutes while you toss the romaine and remaining dressing together in a big bowl. (I use all the dressing, but you do you.)
  6. Slice the steak as thinly as possible against the grain. Arrange it on top of the dressed salad. Serve with the lemon cheeks, remaining ground Parmesan, and more ground pepper.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Jaxmccaff
  • Emma Laperruque
    Emma Laperruque
  • christi
  • Mary
Emma was the food editor at Food52. She created the award-winning column, Big Little Recipes, and turned it into a cookbook in 2021. These days, she's a senior editor at Bon Appétit, leading digital cooking coverage. Say hello on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.

7 Reviews

Jaxmccaff July 8, 2020
I will admit I was a bit skeptical as to whether this would be interesting but OMG it was delicious. I did add some Dijon and garlic to the dressing and the marinade on the steak gave it SO much flavor. This is a big win. Will make this again.
Emma L. July 9, 2020
So glad you enjoyed!
christi June 3, 2019
I have a cheese grating hack, similar to what you suggest. Instead of just putting chunks of parmesan into the bowl of the food processor and processing it that way, put your wedge of Parm in the feed tube of the processor which you have outfitted with the shredding blade. Shred the cheese into the bowl of the processor. Then re-fit the machine with the steel S-blade, and process the shredded cheese into a fine powder, which takes about 3 minutes with the machine running. I think this results in a finer textured grated cheese than just putting chunks of cheese in the food processor and processing it that way. This method is a little more work, but worth it for the great results
Mary June 2, 2019
Great, easy meal to prepare. Added a bit more olive oil and lemon to thin out dressing. Homemade garlic bread rounded out the meal.
Emma L. June 3, 2019
Thanks, Mary! Garlic bread alongside sounds so good.
Dottie June 2, 2019
Followed directions exactly. Dressing was ok, but too thick and was missing the tang we crave with Caesar Dressing. Ended up adding a couple of small cloves of garlic, a bit of Dijon, extra lemon juice and more olive oil.
Emma L. June 3, 2019
Hey Dottie! I love how Caesar dressing is one of those recipes that can really be adjusted to taste. Glad you followed your gut and made it your own!