Charred Mini Steak with Black Tomato Salsa, Onion Rings, and Corn Tamale
Chef Sean Brasel of Touch Catering Miami, FL
Adapted by
January 2008

Yield: 8 Servings


    Onion Rings:
  • ¾ cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 large onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • Canola oil, for deep fryer

  • 4 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 Roma tomato, chopped
  • 6 tomatillos, husks removed and chopped
  • ½ white onion, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 1 small jalapeño, halved and seeds removed
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ dried ancho chile, seeds removed and finely chopped
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped cilantro
  • 3 Tablespoons crushed blue corn tortilla chips

  • 1 Tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 Tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon black mustard seeds
  • 2 dried chipotle chiles, seeds removed
  • 3 Tablespoons Kosher salt
  • 1 Tablespoon paprika
  • ½ Tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 8 4-ounce filet mignon steaks

  • ¾ cup masa harina
  • ¼ cup cornmeal
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • ¼ cup shortening
  • ¾ cup boiling hot water
  • ½ Tablespoon honey
  • ¼ Tablespoon Kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • ¼ cup grated Swiss cheese


For the Onion Rings:
Mix vinegar and sugar in a bowl and add onion, tossing to coat. Let marinate for one hour. Blend flour, cornstarch, salt, cayenne, paprika, and white pepper in a large bowl. Just before serving, preheat oil in deep fryer to 375º F. Drain liquid from onions, and then toss onion rings in the mixture to coat. Fry onions in batches until golden brown; drain on paper towels.

For the Salsa:
Preheat the oven to 450º F. Toss together tomatoes, tomatillos, onion, garlic, jalapeno, and olive oil in a bowl. Spread tomato mixture on a sheet tray and roast until edges of vegetables are burning. Put tomato mixture in bowl and add remaining ingredients; use a wooden spoon to mash salsa into a rough puree.

For the Steak:
Preheat the oven to 350º F. Put oregano, cumin, and both mustard seeds on a sheet tray in the oven until aromatic. Put toasted spices and remaining spices in a coffee grinder and pulse until ground. Season steaks on both sides with spice mixture and let sit for 30 minutes. Preheat a very hot grill. Just before serving, grill steaks over very high heat to desired temperature.

For the Tamale:
Put masa, cornmeal, egg, butter, and shortening in a mixer fitted with paddle. Slowly add hot water. Add remaining ingredients, continuing to mix. Let masa mixture cool and then roll into corn husks, folding ends over to seal packages. Steam for 20 minutes.

To Assemble and Serve:
Pull back corn husks to expose Tamale filling and place on plate; top with Steak. Spoon a generous amount of Salsa on top of Steak and garnish with a pile of Onion Rings.


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