Tag Archives: anchovy

Mexican Spiced Flank Steak and Chipotle Caesar Salad

I have to apologize. I lied to you guys. I said I was going to cook up some meat recipes for you this summer even though they aren’t what I eat so that you could see what it means to eat “greener” meat (“green” eggs and ham anyone?)… but I’ve failed. I gave you guys one chicken recipe that wasn’t even all that wonderful and then I pretty much wiped my hands of the idea of cooking up some “green” meat. I apologize. This blog is so that I can hopefully have even one person try to cook a little bit more eco-friendly than they might be doing right now and I couldn’t even spend the time to teach all of you non-pescetarians how to grill up some meat. This recipe, however, is sure to make you forgive me. My dad said it was quite delicious and I’ll give you tons of tips on how to eat your beef and not feel all of the guilt I’ve been heaping on you. And I’ll even give you the recipe for a delicious Mexican-style caesar salad.

Mexican Spiced Flank Steak

  • Flank Steak
  • 1 small box Vegetable Stock
  • 1/4 cup Lime Juice
  • 1 Jalapeno, diced as small as possible
  • fresh Cilantro, chopped
  • Cumin, ground
  • dried Mexican Oregano
  • Chili Powder

Poke holes in the flank steak with a fork. Place the veggie stock (which gives the tomato flavor so present in many Mexican dishes) with the lime juice and all of the yummy Mexican seasonings in a plastic bag with the flank steak. Let marinate completely covered (you may need more lime juice or veggie stock if you’re feeding more than 2 people) for at least an hour (but the longer the better!). Then grill the flank steak for about 4 minutes on the first side and 3 minutes on the second side (my dad likes his closer to medium rare so if you’re a medium-> well type go for a little longer). Slice the meat in 1/2 inch strips against the grain. It should be super tender and full of the flavors of Mexico. 🙂

I don’t know if you guys have figured this out yet, but I’m a HUGE fan of Mexican food. Maybe it’s the whole living in Southern California thing (and having worked at a Mexican restaurant) but it’s definitely my cuisine of choice when I can’t decide what else to eat. This salad is inspired by a recipe I found in a Mexican cookbook I got while I was in Baja, Cocina de la Familia and I thought it was absolutely wonderful. I hope you guys like it too.

Chipotle Caesar Salad (Ensalada Cesar con Chile Chipotle)

Serves 2 as a Side or 1 as a Meal

  • 2 Hearts of Romaine, torn and rinsed
  • 1 tbsp. EVOO
  • 1 tbsp. Unsalted Butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Stale French Bread, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1/2 can Anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tbsp. Grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 canned Chipotle Chile en adobo sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp. Red Wine Vinegar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 tbsp. EVOO
  • 1/2 tbsp. Peanut Oil

Preheat oven to 275 F. Warm the 1 tbsp. of EVOO and 1 tbsp. of unsalted butter over medium heat. Add the minced garlic. When the garlic begins to lightly brown, add the bread and toss until just starting to brown as well. Then place the bread cubes in the oven for about 20 minutes. Turn while they are cooking to toast evenly.

Meanwhile, place the anchovies, garlic, cheese, mustard, and the chipotle chile, vinegar, and salt in a food processor and process until smooth. (If needed add more chile). Pour in the 3 tbsp. EVOO and 1/2 tbsp. peanut oil while motor is running. Salt and pepper to taste.

Mix together romaine leaves, croutons, and dressing to coat then toss the salad.

I hope that the recipe makes up for my lagging on the eco-information about beef. If not, here’s some real tips to keep your foodprint as small as possible even when you’re craving red meat.

  1. Because meat, especially cow and pig, has such a huge foodprint I can’t stress this enough: ORGANIC ORGANIC ORGANIC. Opt for organic, grass-fed and especially local if you can find it! Organic meat means organic feed means no harmful pesticides or gross antibiotics or growth hormones. Local means less transportation. Grass-fed leads to less cow flatulence leads to less greenhouse gas emissions. It’s better for you, better for the environment, and some people say it tastes better.
  2. Choose a meat such as flank steak that can be sliced (and in this case is meant to be). Then give everyone a smaller portion of meat and a larger amount of sides. Less meat= greener, however, you still get the protein you’re craving.
  3. Since you’re getting meat, pay attention to what else you’re serving. Opt for local and organic produce, quick-fix grains (such as bulgar wheat or quinoa), less dairy, and meat and sides with less packaging (recyclable packaging is best).
  4. Eat less beef. Make the days you do eat it count and then cut back on how often you make it. This recipe is perfect for that. Super yummy so you’ll be satiated until your next beef-fix. If everyone cut back a little bit on their beef intake, there’d be a significant decrease in greenhouse gas emissions. If you were to cut back on 2 oz of meat a day, you’d save 819 lbs CO2 a year. If you were to cut back on 16 oz of meat a day you could save 6,548 lbs CO2 a year. That’s HUGE! –Go Green Get Lean
  5. In Go Green Get Lean, it shows that it takes: about 7 lbs of corn and 2, 500 gallons of water to produce 1 lb or body weight on cattle, more than 200 gallons of fuel to raise a 1,200-lb steer on a feedlot, about 5 times as much water to grow feed grains as it does to grow fruits and veggies, and roughly half of all irrigation water in the US goes to livestock… so think about the changes. I’m not saying stop eating meat. I’m just saying think about cutting back a little. Cows take a lot of land, water, and food. Even if you don’t believe in the “green” movement, think about the fact that that could be going to humans.


  1. This meal used a lot of the techniques stated above to “green” up the meat. Smaller portion of meat to a larger portion of a side dish, organic grass-fed beef raised in CA (which is local for me), organic local salad ingredients, etc.

Fish: What Practices Are Actually Sustainable?

Alright. I know I’ve told you guys about Overfishing.org and the Monterey Bay Aquarium sustainable fish sites. And I still hold to the fact that those are the best sites to look at before you decide which fish you’ll be cooking. There are, however, soooo many more ways to practice sustainable cooking when it comes to fish. This post will go a little more into those practices.

  1. This site tells you all about the environmental pros and cons of the different forms of fishing and farm fishing. It is not super detailed, however, it gives the basic information you should know.
  2. The Monterey Bay Aquarium site also talks about what to think/ask about when considering farmed fish. These are: use of marine resources, fish that are carnivorous and have to be fed other wild species, risk of escaped fish to wild stocks, risk of disease and parasite transfer to wild stocks, risk of pollution and habitat effects, and effectiveness of the management regime.
  3. Think about eating lower on the food chain. Smaller fish species, such as anchovies, herring, mackerel, and sardines, do not need as long to reach full maturity and reproduce. Therefore, they tend to be found in larger, more sustainable numbers. Larger fish, such as tuna, reproduce at a much older age and take a very long time to mature. Therefore, they are being overfished and are not maintaining their numbers. Fish lower on the food chain also have less toxins because of reduced biomagnification.
  4. Make sure that the fisheries you’re buying from don’t have high bycatch numbers–> the amount of fish species being caught that are unintended.
  5. Avoid fish caught by trawling–>this involves dragging a net along the bottom of the water and can cause irreparable ecosystem damage.
  6. Try to avoid fish flown overnight to get to your plate: ask questions. This can involve a lot of fossil fuels.
  7. Maybe try fishing yourself: hook and line fishing is the most sustainable type.
  8. Wild or farmed, fish include a lot of transportation, packaging it on ice, processing, and other energy costs.
  9. “Organic” means nothing when it comes to fish. There are no regulations set by the USDA. This doesn’t help the eco-cost at all.
  10. The U.S. has the strictest regulations. For example, shrimp from Asia are destroying mangrove swamps.
  11. Take advantage of the Blue Ocean Institute’s FishPhone: Text the message FISH followed by a type of fish to 30644 when you’re in the supermarket and you can find out about whether a certain type of fish is sustainable.

Overfishing is a problem. No one is disagreeing with that… check out this BBC News Report or this Times article. So, now that I’ve let you know a few more sustainable fishing choices and options, here are some recipes utilizing those options:

Scallops with Wild Rice

  • 1/4 cup wild rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 scallops
  • balsamic vinegar

So this is a super easy, super yummy recipe. It serves one for lunch. Boil the water, add rice and reduce to simmer for 40 minutes (or until the rice is soft). Drain any excess water. Meanwhile, cook the scallops in a little bit of olive oil to brown. In a separate pot, reduce the balsamic vinegar until it thickens. Top the rice with the scallops, and the scallops with the reduced balsamic vinegar.

Anchovy Pasta

  • Note: be really really scarce on the anchovy. They have a very strong taste. I made this mistake because I haven’t cooked anchovies in a long time and it was a fishy experience (but the flavor was still good).
  • A couple of anchovies (canned in olive oil).
  • A clove of garlic, minced
  • Paprika
  • Dill
  • Parsley, coarsely chopped
  • Linguini (any type of pasta works)

While the pasta is boiling, brown the garlic in a pan and then add the anchovy. Cook until the anchovies melt. Add the paprika, dill, and coarsely chopped parsley. Mix into the pasta when cooked (I mixed mine in after taking the picture).