Day 94: The sum of the parts is greater than the whole

April 4, 2007

Dinner this evening, Sliced Grilled Steak on Blue Cheese Biscuits with Watercress, Sour Cream, and Sliced Tomatoes was incredibly straightforward and easy to make. As I was pottering around in the kitchen, I tasted a little of all the elements, and everything seemed very promising. In fact, this is the first meal for a while that I was actually looking forward to, mainly because I thought we would be eating cheese scones. Which is an improvement on a few years ago, when I would have been convinced that we were having steak on crackers. However, although the American biscuit is similar to the British scone, it just isn’t quite the same; much the same way that an English Muffin bought over here bares only a passing resemblance to the beautiful British muffin. The biscuits were made with a packet mix, a whole new experience for me, with added cheese thrown in for good measure. They were certainly quick and easy, light and airy, but a little on the bland side. Some seasoning would have probably helped matters a little.

The flank steak was marinated in olive oil, grill seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, chopped garlic and salt and pepper. It was grilled for about 5 minutes each side, before resting for a while before being sliced. It tasted great on its own; tender, succulent and flavoursome. The dish was assembled with sliced tomatoes, sour cream and watercress. I had high hopes for this dish, but somehow the cumulative effect of the whole sandwich cancelled out the individual elements.

The biscuits became a poor bread substitute, they were bland and crumbly. The meat was drowned entirely, and the watercress and tomato just tasted wet. Maybe the sour cream dulled all the flavours, I’m not sure, but something wasn’t right. As a rule, we tend to use sour cream in that fashion to balance out a spicy dish. Perhaps the lack of spice meant that the sour cream just masked all flavour.

Flank steak cooked in this way is very easy and good. Perhaps with a tomato- watercress salad and the cheese biscuits on the side, this would have been a more successful venture. Disappointing. Tomorrow, we are making Island Bird: Pineapple-Rum Chicken, followed by version 2; Piña Colada Shrimp. We actually bought fresh pineapple this week, rather than our usual tinned variety. Now we just have to make sure not to eat it before dinner tomorrow. Baby A and I, we like our pineapple.

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