flank steak with crispy polenta and roasted shallot vinaigrette

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Servs: 4

Once the polenta is made (which, for convenience, can be done a day or two ahead of time) this dish is a snap to put together. Simply sauté the polenta pieces, grill the flank steak, place them on the plate, and spoon on the luscious roasted shallot vinaigrette and you have a quick and very satisfying plate of food. A mound of sautéed mushrooms, or for something lighter, asparagus or haricots verts, is a perfect accompaniment. Crispy potatoes are a splendid substitute for the polenta.

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  • add   salt and pepper
  • add   2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • add   2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • add   4 shallots, peeled
  • add   1/4 cup butter
  • add   1 cup olive oil
  • add   4 4-ounce pieces flank steak
  • add   2 cups cooked polenta, hot
  • add   10 springs thyme
  • add   3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar


  1. Method
  2. To prepare the vinaigrette: Place the shallots and 3/4 cup of the
  3. olive oil in a small ovenproof pan and cover tightly. Bake at 350 degrees for
  4. 50 to 60 minutes, or until the shallots are soft. Let the shallots cool in
  5. the olive oil, and then remove, reserving the oil. Julienne the shallots and
  6. put them in a bowl. Add the balsamic vinegar and slowly whisk in the reserved
  7. olive oil. Add the chopped chives and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  8. To prepare the polenta: Cook the garlic in 3 tablespoons of butter for 1
  9. minute. Fold into the polenta and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  10. Spread the polenta into a 1/2-inch thick layer on a small sheet pan. Cover
  11. with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours. Cut the polenta into four
  12. 3-inch discs and sauté in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a hot,
  13. nonstick pan for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and
  14. crispy. Blot on paper towels.
  15. To prepare the steak: Season the steak with salt and pepper and rub with 1/4
  16. cup olive oil. Remove the thyme leaves from the stems and rub them onto the
  17. beef. Grill for 5 to 7 minutes on each side, or until medium-rare.
  18. Assembly
  19. Place a piece of the polenta in the center of each plate and top
  20. with a piece of the steak. Spoon the Roasted Shallot Vinaigrette over the
  21. steak and around the plates and top with freshly ground black pepper.
  22. Wine Notes
  23. The warm garlic flavors in the polenta mesh beautifully with
  24. Italian varietals. The rich fruit of Barbera d'Alba from a producer like
  25. Giacomo Conterno beautifully balances the garlic, and has the full acidity
  26. needed for the shallot vinaigrette.

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