A protein packed Sunday brunch.
That being said, I would be happy to have this any time of day and it’s one of those dishes where you can miss out any one of the main components and it still makes a good meal.
It’s especially good as a protein hit after exercise. OK, so we didn’t actually do the exercise today, but the thought was there!
Bavette steak used to be a real struggle to find in this country, but it’s been steadily growing in popularity the past few years. It’s a cheap and delicious cut as long as it’s cooked rare and you can now find it in many butchers. Even Waitrose has started selling them; they come in small vac packed portions of two and are normally between £3.50-£5.00 per pack (depending on weight) and make a cheap and tasty alternative to the standard steak cuts.
Now if only Onglet can enjoy the same level of exposure, one of my absolute favourite cuts of steak which is still painfully hard to find. Fair play to our local branch of The Ginger Pig however who can usually be relied on to have some in stock.
This recipe uses frozen chillies as I didn’t have any fresh. I am always buying bags of chillies, using a couple and having one or two left over which I know I won’t be using anytime soon. Rather than leave them malingering in the veg draw of the fridge for days on end I add them to a zip lock bag I keep in the freezer. Any left over chillies, nubs of ginger (peeled), trimmed sticks of lemongrass or fresh kaffir lime leaves go into it. It’s a great resource to have at your disposal to liven up a store cupboard dinner when you don’t want to make a special trip to the shops. The leaves can be used straight from frozen whilst the chillies, ginger or lemongrass I leave to defrost for a minute or two before using a fine microplane to grate them directly into dishes.
Cooking time: 30 minutes or less
Serves: 2 portions
2 Small Bavette steaks (around 175g-200g each)
2 Tortillas or flat breads
2 Small ripe avocados
3 Garlic cloves
2 Red chillies (frozen in my case)
1 Red Onion
1 Carton or can of black beans in water (360g)
1 Tsp Fresh ground cumin
1 Tsp Smoked garlic powder
150g Cheddar cheese, finely grated
1 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
2 Tbsp Harissa paste loosened with a little olive oil
Fresh Coriander, roughly chopped
Remove the steaks from the fridge one hour before you wish to start cooking if you can.
Prep the smashed avocado – halve the avocados, remove the stone and squeeze the flesh from the skins directly into a small bowl. Add a grated clove of garlic, one grated or finely chopped red chilli and the juice of half a lime and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Roughly mash the mixture with a fork, not too fine – you want lumps for texture. Check for seasoning, acidity etc and adjust according to taste then cover and refrigerate.
Drain the black beans and then dry them as well as you can on kitchen paper and place in a bowl. Put a frying pan on a high flame and heat until starting to smoke. Add the beans to the pan and dry fry them. Don’t stir the beans, leave for 1 min and then toss in the pan and leave for a further minute. They should be giving off a delicious smoky aroma, but not burning! Tip the (now smoky) beans back into the bowl.
Don’t wash the frying pan, add a little oil to it and lower the flame to very low. Finely dice the red onion and add to the pan. Soften in the oil for 8 mins or so before grating or finely chopping the remaining garlic cloves and red chilli and adding to the pan. Continue to fry for 2 mins before adding the cumin and smoked garlic powder. Cook for a further minute before adding 2/3 of the beans to the pan with around 100ml of water.
Give the pan a good stir and leave to simmer on a very low heat, add more water if the beans begin to look a little dry.
Preheat a ridged griddle pan over the highest possible flame. Season the steaks with a good pinch of salt and when the griddle starts smoking add your steaks to the pan. Steaks of this size, at this heat should need little more than 60-90 seconds per side. Once cooked set the steaks aside to rest for 5 mins with a grind of black pepper.
Put a pan of water on over a medium heat, bringing to a simmer.
Go back to the pan of beans and roughly mash with the back of a wooden spoon, add the red wine vinegar and the remaining 1/3 of beans, you want these to stay whole, stir and heat through for a further minute, then taste for seasoning, adjusting accordingly.
Poach your eggs in the simmering pan of water for 3-4 mins depending on the size of your eggs. Remove from the water with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.
Assemble the dish!
Heat your tortillas or flat breads according to packet instructions. Place one on each plate as the base of the dish.
Spread half the beans on each tortilla, and then spoon half the smashed avocado on top of each.
Slice the steak at an angle and add in a pile next to the avocado along with any of the resting juices.
Place the poached egg on top, positioned in between the avocado and steak.
Spoon over the sour cream and Harissa as you wish along with a squeeze or two of the remaining lime. Sprinkle with the cheddar and roughly chopped coriander (which I had forgotten to add in the pic at the top of the page!) and serve.