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Asian Spiced Flank Steak With Basmati Rice and Mango Salad

Asian Spiced Flank Steak With Basmati Rice and Mango Salad
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You can serve the steak atop the salad…
Or make the salad all by itself…either way, these dishes are terrific!
         If there is a first for everything, today’s Chewing the Fat qualifies.  The first in this case was my discovery that one of my go-to heroes of the kitchen seriously let me down.  I went to his well-thumbed cookbook.  I found a chicken recipe that had a lot going for it –combining lemons and curry.  It looked relatively easy, involved a quick yogurt marinade and a simple roast in the oven.  It was awful.  A dreadful color, it took ‘tangy’ to a place I couldn’t get away from fast enough.  But lo and behold, what was under the chicken was fantastic! A wonderful rice salad with crunchy cashews, fresh mint, ripe mango and crisp haricots verts folded into fragrant basmati rice was a total winner.  So for the first time ever, I decided to share the salad with you and forget all about the chicken.  What to serve with the rice salad was a no-brainer.  I’ve collected any number of steak recipes and it seemed to me that a recipe for Asian inflected Flank Steak would be a perfect accompaniment to my hero’s terrific rice salad.

I highly recommend my new Made-in-America
Chef’s Design stovetop grill pan and griddle from
Wisconsin Aluminum Foundry in Manitowoc WI.
         At first I wondered if this dish wasn’t best kept for a summer meal.  I am sure the steak would be terrific on the grill and the mango and rice salad would be an ideal side dish.   Even though I served it in January, I thought about writing it up and saving it for later this year. But I have a surprisingly large following in Australia, a friend in California who is expecting 80 degree temperatures to continue this week and lots of readers in Florida.  And today, as the temperature in New York reached 60 for the second time this week, I thought, what are you waiting for?  It’s practically summer!  So I brought out my new made in America stovetop grill, put the steak in a quick marinade for a half hour, and made the rice salad while the steak sat basting in Asian flavors. 
         A lot of people have a lot of drama surrounding their rice cooking. I find both Jasmine and Basmati rices much more forgiving than Carolina or Uncle Ben’s.  Almost like couscous, they are pulled off the heat the minute the water boils and just sit on the stove absorbing the water.  Depending on how much water you use, you can make your rice stickier with more, or fluffier with less.  In this case, you want a ‘drier’ rice which you spread on a baking sheet pan and let cool to room temperature.  While the rice is cooking, make perfect haricots verts by using lots and lots of salt in the water pot and the moment they’re done, drain them and put them in an ice water bath.  This will let them keep their bright green color.  Finally, put the remaining ingredients through a rough chop.  Combine all the ingredients in a big bowl, make a very simple olive oil and lemon dressing and add that and the mango at the last minute.  Flawless! The steak takes 6 minutes a side and a gets a nice 10 minute rest before being sliced and served atop the salad.   Here are the recipes:

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