Howdy – happy Monday!

I hope your week got off to a better start than mine did. This afternoon my irrational luck with repeatedly locking my keys in my car joined forces with a growing talent for locking myself out of the house, as I successfully locked both my car AND house keys in the car before I made it to the front door when I went home over lunch.


A frozen phone call for help to Ben rendered the house unlocked and opened 30 toe-numbing minutes later…just in time to turn around and go back to work. Blerg!

Please Ma’am, no pictures. Happy to help.

Note to self: STOP DOING THINGS LIKE THIS also, place a spare house key somewhere other than on your car key ring because, let’s be real, you probably won’t stop doing things like this.

Please tell me I’m not the only one?! 

In other news, if you don’t feel like going out tomorrow, I have an amazing recipe that will knock the heart-adorned socks off of you and your loved one(s) on Valentine’s Day – Grilled Thai Beef Salad with Crispy Shallots.


This salad recipe comes from Ellie Krieger, and is absolutely out of this world. Big, bold flavors like soy sauce and sesame oil combine with the sweet-earthy flavors of fresh basil and cilantro for a salad that won’t leave your husband cough making a peanut butter sandwich to fill up on afterwards.

That’s because it’s topped with RED MEAT! I feel like such a wretched Midwesterner – I don’t think I’ve had a good steak since last summer. This salad was far overdue, which made it taste even more delectable.


Grilled Thai Beef Salad is sexy and impressive, yet light and easy to prepare, leaving you with plenty of time to snuggle after dinner.


Start with a flank steak, which is not only lower in fat than other steak cuts, but is cheaper too. Marinate the steak in a sultry combination of fresh lime juice, brown sugar, soy sauce or gluten-free tamari (dish will not be GF if using soy sauce) and ginger, then grill it at a very high heat for about 5 minutes a side.


I WISH I would have thought about making this during our stretch of 60 degree days a couple weeks ago, but since our grill is now under 6 inches of snow, my Griddler took over. After the steak is done, let it rest for 5-7 minutes before slicing it very thinly against the natural grain of the meat. This is important!

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Resting the steak then cutting it thinly results in juicy, buttery, tender, melt-in-your-mouth slices.


What I loved the most about this salad though, were the sauteed shallots piled on top.


Just thinly slice a couple shallots, then saute them in olive oil until they’re golden brown and crispy. They are indescribably delicious.


Pile the shallots and beef atop a bed of baby spinach and romaine lettuce that’s been tossed with fresh basil, cilantro and a tangy Thai-inspired dressing, and dig in.


Grilled Thai Beef Salad with Crispy Shallots


Grilled Thai Beef Salad with Crispy Shallots is full of savory, bold flavors, making it absolutely mouthwatering.


Serves 2-3

  • 3/4lb - 1lb flank steak
  • 4 Tablespoons fresh lime juice, divided
  • 3 Tablespoons soy sauce or gluten-free tamari (dish will not be GF if using soy sauce)
  • 3 Tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 Tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons fresh ginger, peeled and microplaned (or minced)
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce
  • 1 bag Dole baby spinach
  • 1 bag Dole Romaine lettuce
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup basil, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 shallots, cut into thin rings
  • 1 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


  1. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, canola oil, brown sugar, garlic, ginger and chili-garlic sauce. Pour half the mixture into a ziplock bag. Add the steak and 2 1/2 Tablespoons lime juice to the bag and marinate for 4 hours in the refrigerator, or overnight. Add the remaining 1 1/2 Tablespoons lime juice to the remaining mixture and reserve to dress the salad.
  2. Heat a grill or grill pan to high, then spray with non-stick spray. Remove the steak from the marinade and grill for 5 minutes a side, or until cooked to your preferred level of doneness. Remove the steak to a plate, let it rest for 5-7 minutes, then slice it thinly against the grain.
  3. Heat extra virgin olive oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat. Add in shallots and saute, stirring often, until golden brown and crispy, about 5 minutes. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the baby spinach, romaine lettuce, cilantro, basil, and tomatoes. Pour reserved salad dressing over and toss to coat. Divide salads among plates, top with steak slices, and crispy shallots.


Slightly adapted from Ellie Krieger

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.


Each bite is bursting with sweet & salty flavors, accented by pops of freshness from the herbs and juicy tomatoes.


You’ll both (assuming you both eat meat) fall in the love with the steak too. Flank steak never fails. Flank steak for president! Let me know if you try this!