Monday, November 1, 2010

Espresso Yourself Steaks & Spinach Mashed Potatoes

"Hey, can we use the video camera?" is a question that should always cause a parent to go check what his/her kid(s) are doing.

That's Trevor performing a "high velocity inspection" of our street's leaf pile. With his football season ending this past weekend, he has had too much time and energy on his hands. It's like he's been drinking espresso or something.

Speaking of espresso, after participating in Joanne's Recipe Impossible challenge last week, I still had a box full of leftover goodies courtesy of Marx Foods. (Hint hint - get over there and vote)

One of the ingredients was "espresso sea salt". I recalled the Red Eye Steaks recipe that Curt of Live Fire Online used to take him to the regional semifinals in this year's Berringer Great Steak Challenge, which used brewed espresso. I knew right away I wanted to pair that with some of the dried pasilla and aji chili peppers and use it for a beef rub.

Espresso Yourself Ribeye Steaks

2 ribeye steaks
1 tsp Marx Foods espresso sea salt
1 tsp dried chilies, ground
2 large cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp parsley, finely chopped
1 Tbsp olive oil

Mix all of the wet rub ingredients together and smear onto the steaks. Let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Set up your grill for direct heat at 450-500f.

A tip for getting good grid marks is be patient. The air temp may be hot but it takes your grill grate longer to get to the same temps. Once my Big Green Egg hits my target temp, I still wait another 20-30 minutes to let the grates load up with heat energy.

Grill the steaks for 8 minutes, flipping and turning 90 degrees every two minutes. This should get you to an internal temp of 125f for medium rare. My Craycort cast iron modular grate knows how to have it's way with a steak.

Let your steaks rest on a raised rack for 10 minutes.

Want a different side dish for your steaks? Take your favorite mashed potato recipe and add 1/2 cup of fresh baby spinach per serving. That may sound like a lot but spinach wilts down and loses most of it's volume.

Just heat 1 teaspoon of bacon fat in a pan over medium high heat and wilt the spinach for 2-3 minutes.

Chop and blend in to your potatoes as you mash them.

After eating a bite of the spinach mashed potatoes together with a small bite of steak, I thought, "This tastes like eating the whole steakhouse in one bite!"

What did I think of the rub? I probably went a little too light in applying it but I wanted the espresso flavors to be subtle. The recipe above is adjusted to reflect what I'd do next time, by increasing the salt and peppers. But the espresso gave it a nice twist and the mild fruity flavor of the chilies kind of reminded me of a mole sauce.

I haven't done a game of Versus in a while so here we go - tell me your preferences in the comments:
Coffees vs Energy Drinks


  1. LOL at the video. We used to jump into the big raked piles and the occasional fire hydrant, but riding a skate board into a pile looks like a blast. Your steaks look super good.

  2. We always mixed spinach & potatoes at our house. The taste is an old comfort for me.
    Trevor is a great joy.

  3. That video was awesome! I want some of that steak. And coffee beats energy drinks every day :)

  4. I'm sure the potatoes are good, but gimme that steak! I haven't had one in awhile. Think I'm due.

    Definitely coffee for me. Apparently energy drinks are intended for the younger gen.

  5. I LOVED the joy of the racing boy video - I can only imagine the rush!!
    The steak rub looks outstanding, but those potatoes are fabulous. What a great side idea.

    As for the versus - I'd pick coffee any day. The smell of brewed coffee is what does it for me.

  6. Coffee... can NOT function without at least one large Dunkin donuts cream only, daily.

    Your grill marks are always so freaking perfect!

  7. Those steaks look mouthwatering. And I have never heard of spinach mashed potatoes, but I love spinach and therefore am very intrigued! Delicious all around!

  8. Tell your son that I thought his video was AWESOME!!

    The steak looks beautiful and I am loving the spinach and mashed potato combination.

  9. Spinach mashed potatoes and a juicy steak - it doesn't get any better than this. I love seasoned salts and used to make my own for little presents. I'll have to give Marx's salt a try.

  10. LOL.. great video!! Heck, we only used to jump in small piles after my dad labored for hours to get all the leaves raked up....that pile blew any of his piles away!!! :)
    The steak looks fantastic...and sounds amazing too!
    I am definitely a coffee drinks are too much for me... I get all jittery and freaked out!! LOL Sort of like my college days :)

  11. Spinach mashed potatoes is the only reliable way I can get my father to eat spinach. True story. I'm thinking about mixing tofu in as well. Just to see the look on his face after I tell him what he just ate.

    using the espresso salt on the steak is a fantastic idea! Great use of the leftover products!

  12. You took two perfect cuts of meat and made them...perfecter?

  13. Love the video and the steak and taters look ideal! I've been browsing through all the deliciousness I've missed lately - yummy popcorn balls and loved the ghost story, then there's that awesome rolled pork roast, the shrimp - I can't take anymore! I'm about to take a bite of my computer monitor :-)

  14. I am with Toon, perfectrerererer...oh I could go on!

  15. oh man that steak looks good. I know that I will not get a good, grilled steak for many months. even though I live where it can be 90'in november, the grill is shut down until april. (wth?!)

  16. coffee for me for sure... Too old for fads

    And I have been adding coffee to different meats for awhile. Never for steak for some reason, looks great

  17. As the mom of a boy who kept us in a constant supply of bandaids, I watched the video thinking those cute little legs and arms are going to look like hamburger if they hit a rock! That was quite a pile of leaves - so do you bag them, burn them or blow them into the neighbors yard?!? Your spinach potatoes are on tap for tonight - thanks!

  18. Chris - I'm so glad to see Trevor having some good old fashioned fun! I'd like to throw video games and computers out the window sometimes.

    I must have missed your entry to Joanne's event. I'll have to go back and check it out. The espresso salt sounds like a wonderful ingredient with steak. I've had that combination once before and really enjoyed it. Your entire meal looks heavenly!

    I'm not much of a coffee drinker, but I have been know to have a NOS energy drink here and there. Those babies will keep you up all night.

  19. Steak and mashed potatoes are my favorite! Adding spinach to the potatoes is genious, Chris! The video of your son is awesome!

    Kim in MD

  20. The video rocks! And so does the steak rub - great way to use the espresso salt! I never had spinach potatoes - love the idea. I don't drink either - I'm a tea girl through and through.


Comments are moderated and won't appear immediately.