Pan-seared steak with arugula pesto

Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Soy Free

2 Servings, 740 Calories/Serving

25 Minutes

To add a little zing to this cooling cucumber-radish side salad, Chef Justine sprinkles in lightly toasted nigella seeds from our favorite spice source, Oaktown Spice Shop in Oakland. Sometimes called black cumin or black onion seeds, they are popular in Middle Eastern and Indian cooking, where they are called kalonji.


  • ¼ pound Persian cucumber
  • 3 ounces celery
  • 2 ounces red radishes
  • Fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • ¼ teaspoon nigella seeds
  • Two 6-ounce top sirloin steaks
  • 1 ounce walnuts
  • 1 lemon
  • Arugula pesto (arugula - garlic - pecans - olive oil - salt)



Prep the vegetables

  • Trim the cucumber; cut in half lengthwise, then thinly slice on the diagonal.
  • With a peeler, remove the coarse outer layers of the celery stalks; thinly slice the stalks on the diagonal.
  • Trim the the radishes; cut them in half lengthwise, then thinly slice.
  • Strip the parsley leaves from the stems.


Toast the nigella seeds

In a pan over medium-low heat, add the nigella seeds and toast, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool.


Cook the steaks

  • Pat the steaks dry with a paper towel and season generously with salt and pepper.
In the same pan used to toast the seeds, warm 1 to 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add the steaks and cook until well browned, 3 to 4 minutes per side for medium rare, depending on thickness. While the meat cooks, prepare the salad.


Make the cucumber salad

  • Coarsely chop the walnuts.
  • Zest and juice the lemon, keeping the zest and juice separate.
In a mixing bowl, combine the cucumbers, celery, radishes, parsley, nigella seeds, walnuts, lemon zest, and 1 tablespoon lemon juice with 1 to 2 tablespoons oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and toss well to coat.



Spoon the arugula pesto onto individual plates. Top with the steaks and serve with the cucumber salad on the side.

Nutrition per serving: Calories: 740, Protein: 39 g, Total Fat: 61 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 37 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 12.5 g, Saturated Fat: 9 g, Cholesterol: 90 mg, Carbohydrates: 12 g, Fiber: 5 g, Added Sugar: 0 g, Sodium: 790 mg
Contains: tree nuts

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