Rib-Eye Steaks with Tomato Basil Relish


Sunday is farmers’ market day here in Walnut Creek, and if you know who to ask, and what to ask, and you ask nicely, in August and September, you can get a box of slightly over-ripe heirloom tomatoes for $4. And by over-ripe, I mean just ripe. Most of the tomatoes at the farmers’ market would do well to sit for a day or two, because they don’t want you to buy them, take them home, and have them be a soggy mess in a day or two.

So, this Sunday found me at the farmers’ market, asking the right person, nicely, if she had 1/2 box of ‘sauce tomatoes’ that she would sell me. She did. She filled the box almost full, though, not 1/2, so here I find myself with a lot of tomatoes. Not a problem that bothers me all that much. On the way home from the farmers’ market, I stopped at the grocery store and bought a couple of steaks, and an impulse buy, the current issue of Sunset magazine, which is a special issue, Fast and Fresh recipes. This is a compilation issue, with recipes both new and old, and this particular recipe comes from the September, 2004 issue.

I didn’t buy rib-eye, since it’s pretty expensive, and the steaks I bought were a LOT smaller than the ones suggested here, but I suspect that’s a good thing. They were really yummy, and a big hit in our house. They don’t heat up the house, since I used our grill, and they used one of my huge beautiful tomatoes. Yum. Give them a try while you can get really ripe, really fresh tomatoes, whether from your garden, farmers’ market, or grocery store.

(picture from Sunset)

Rib-Eye Steaks with Tomato-Basil Relish

4 boned beef rib-eye steaks (1 1/2 in. thick, 12 to 16 oz. each)
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound firm-ripe tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
1 or 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
Salt and fresh-cracked pepper

1. Trim excess surface fat from steaks. Rinse steaks and pat dry; set in a single layer on a plate. In a small bowl, mix half the vinegar and half the olive oil. Rub mixture all over steaks to coat. Let stand for at least 15 minutes, or cover and chill up to 4 hours.

2. Meanwhile, rinse, core, and coarsely chop tomatoes. In a bowl, mix tomatoes, basil, garlic, and remaining balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Add salt to taste.

3. Lay steaks on an oiled barbecue grill over a solid bed of hot coals or high heat on a gas grill (you can hold your hand at grill level only 2 to 3 seconds); close lid on gas grill. Cook steaks, turning once, until browned on both sides and done to your liking in center of thickest part (cut to test), 10 to 13 minutes for medium-rare.

4. Transfer steaks to plates. Let rest in a warm place for 3 to 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste and garnish with tomato-basil relish.

UPDATE: We made this dish again tonight, with chicken. YUMMY. I think it would be good with fish as well. Maya voted for chicken as better than steak, and Ted voted for steak better than chicken. Me? I’ll say steak, but chicken was close. πŸ™‚

This entry was posted in Recipes.

10 thoughts on “Rib-Eye Steaks with Tomato Basil Relish

  1. That looks de-licious! I bought some tomatoes yesterday with the intent of making pico de gallo. How I wish we had farmers’ markets here.

  2. Mmm… Its like brushetta with MEAT instead of the crostini!

    BTW – I must go with you to the farmer’s market someday so you can tell me who your favorite vendors are. I’ve also heard to ask for Jam Fruit to get the overripe stone fruit since you’re gonna mash it all up anyway.

  3. There is NOTHING better, IMO, than ripe heirloom tomatoes with fresh basil in the summertime. On anything. Which reminds me that I didn’t get my summer tomato plate at one of the local eateries, with fresh basil, fresh mozzarella, fresh chevre and fresh baked & sliced baguettes. Drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Yum…

  4. Sheliza, no farmers’ market there? How is that legal? πŸ˜‰

    Cherry, that’s exactly what it was like…, though with the addition of balsamic vinegar, which isn’t traditionally in bruschetta. I wasn’t sure it would be good, but it was REALLY good. πŸ™‚ The booth I go to for fruit sells ‘jam fruit’, which one of these days (soon) I must get some nectarines and make a crumble or a crisp or whatever. Mmmm. Yeah, you can come with. Sunday mornings, and I park at Target.

    KelliAmanda, we used to have a very similar dish, and it was Ted’s FAVORITE. Sadly, the restaurant closed recently. So it looks like we’ll be coming to visit you soon, k?

    Ted, I’m glad you liked it so much! It’s a keeper! We still have a lot of tomatoes left, if you want to have it again. πŸ˜‰

  5. Oh, J! Your food and recipe posts always make me so hungry! Thanks for posting this, because we’ve got sooooooooooooo many tomatoes from our garden this year!

    Uhhh…Anytime you guys are up for a BBQ/potluck, I’m in! πŸ˜‰ Too bad we live a few hours away by plane (and about a week’s worth of driving if traveling by car)! LOL!

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