I read something recently by some psychologists that one of the greatest losses of communication in the modern family is the near extinction of the family meal. It said that we cannot estimate the far-reaching negative repercussions on the family, church, and ultimately the nation for trading a half hour of family unity around the dinner table for other activities. I’m certain this is not news to us. We all know that the table is undoubtedly a place of communion and fellowship. Being asked to sit at another’s table is both a privilege and a sign of acceptance. The table is the center of fellowship. Rarely do we accept an invitation to someone’s home without a table of some kind being prepared. Whether we share a meal or a simple dessert, fellowship is the goal. This struck home this past week as I had the chance to spend the weekend with my daughter, and we made this dish together. We don’t have the chance to share meals around the table much anymore. And I have even fewer opportunities with my daughter-in-law because of the miles between us. In a small way the idea of making the same dish and sharing it via phone conversation, text or email has helped to close the gap. I hope you have the chance to either make this meal or any other for that matter and enjoy a meal around the table with those closest to you. To share life, and build community, strengthening the bonds between us over a meal.-s
Here are Lauren's thoughts on this steak dinner...
Its been a cold summer here in Chicago, but even though I can't feel the season I want to taste it. Something that has come to represent summer to me are the fresh herbs. One of the perks of my building is that we have three large herb beds on the roof. It's the main reason I picked this recipe. For the chimichurri, I grabbed whatever herbs I could find, like parsley, oregano, and lemon thyme. Who knew lemon thyme was so beautiful with tiny purple flowers? A vibrant addition. Chimichurri is so simple, fresh, and versatile, but it definitely goes best with steak. When you have steak you also have to have potatoes. This summer potato hash provides the requisite starch and vegetable, without taking attention away from the star main. Highly enjoyable meal!-l
And this is what Hannah had to say...
This weekend my mom and I made the flank steak with chimichurri sauce and squash. I am continually surprised how easy these recipes are to make and modify. I enjoyed the flavor of the chimichurri with the steak and veggies. My mom showed me the importance of using a good quality pan, since some won't reach the same level of heat to brown the steak. Using a cast iron pan definitely seems like the way to go for most dishes we've made in this book. I love being around to cook everything in one pan so it's simple and the cleanup is easy as well. -h
Flank Steak with Chimichurri and Summer Squash Hash
One 12 oz. flank steak, at room temperature
1 Tbsp. steak seasoning
3 green onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
1/2 minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 Tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 new potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1/4 inch dice
1 summer squash, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1/4 slices
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
Cut the steak into two portions and rub it generously on all sides with the steak seasoning. Set aside at room temperature.
In a small bowl, combine about one-third of the green onions, all of the parsley, and half of the garlic and toss to mix. Add 2 Tbsp of the olive oil, the vinegar, the red pepper flakes, a pinch of salt, and a few grinds of pepper and stir with a fork to mix well. Taste and adjust the seasoning. The sauce should be tart, but if it's too vinegary for you, add a little more salt and olive oil. Set the chimichurri sauce aside.
Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat and add the remaining 2 Tbsp olive oil. When the oil shimmers, arrange the steaks in the pan and cook, undisturbed, until nicely browned on the bottom, about 4 minutes. Turn and cook on the second side for about 3 minutes longer for medium-rare steak, or 4 minutes for medium. Remove the pan from heat, transfer the steaks to a plate, and tent with aluminum foil to keep warm.
Add the potatoes to the hot pan and saute until they soften, about 3 minutes. Add the squash, the remaining green onions, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper and saute until all the vegetables are tender, about 4 minutes longer. Some of the steak flavor will come up from the browned bits on the bottom of the pan, so the vegetables will turn a little brown. It's important to keep things sizzling, you may need to add a little more oil to the pan. Stir in the remaining garlic and peas. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Saute for another minute or so to blend the flavors and warm the peas. Remove the pan from the heat. Carve the steak into thin slices. Divide the steak and veggie hash between two warmed plates and garnish with a dollop or two of the chimichurri.
Recipe from One Pan, Two Plates by Carla Snyder