Gluten-Free with PMD: Coffee-rubbed Cowboy Steak


First of all, Merry New Year’s to you and your kin!

I hope you ate and drank with style and vigor during this holiday season, and I hope you are as unexcited about the next major holiday, Hallmark…err…Valentine’s Day, as I am.

This week, I give to you a recipe that is not only gluten-free, but potentially vegetarian should you have someone who is less enthusiastic about eating cows than you coming to dinner.

I made this dish on New Year’s Eve, hence the bubbly in the background.

We will call this:

Coffee-rubbed Cowboy Steak with Wasabi Mashed Potatoes and Greens

You will need:

  • Beef Ribeye steak with plenty of marbling (It is said that the fat content contained within this cut makes it king of grilled meats, and the most flavorful bang for your buck…check your Filet Mignon at the door please.)
  • Optional veggie version: One whole eggplant, cut longways a little over a half-inch thick. You want one that is nice and firm and with a low content of seeds (this part you will not know until after you’ve cut into it).
  • Freshly ground coffee for the spice rub. It is best to let it spend at least two full cycles or close to two minutes on the finest setting your grinder has, you don’t want chunks of beans on your meat.
  • Also for the rub, you will need ground cumin, garlic powder, chili powder, a pinch of cayenne, and of course, salt and ground black pepper.
  • Enough purple potatoes to feed the diners, two to three average-sized per person.
  • A bunch of fresh garlic, as always
  • Button mushrooms
  • Beet greens (the red and green tops of a bunch of beets)
  • A shot of Dijon mustard.
  • Powdered or fresh wasabi. I like to keep a small tin of the powdered stuff on the shelf, cause you never know when a sushi Saturday may erupt.
  • Milk or cream
  • Non-GMO, non-rBST butter

Start by combining the ingredients for the rub in a bowl, about three tablespoons of each, excluding the salt and pepper, of which you need about a tablespoon. Rub down your steak or eggplant on both sides, and allow to sit at room temp while you prepare the rest of the meal.

Coffee-rubbed Cowboy SteakAbout the time you get a large pot of water to a rolling boil, turn on your grill. Turn that sucker on at least three-quarters to full strength. You want it HOT (if you do not have a grill or are faint of heart during winter, cook the meat/veggie in a wicked hot cast iron skillet). Now throw your peeled and quartered potatoes into the water and allow cooking until they are fork tender. Remove from water and place in a covered bowl.

Get one pan going with olive oil, garlic, and washed and roughly chopped beet greens, and another pan with a pat or two of butter and the washed and sliced ‘shrooms. About this time you should throw the meat on the HOT grill, and allow to get nice grill marks – aka do not move for five minutes.

Now add a cup or so of milk to the taters along with a healthy amount of salt (starchy things hold up to salt) some pepper, and about a tablespoon and a half of the wasabi powder. Begin to mash em’ up. I use an inexpensive potato masher available at the Food Farm for under $5.

While they are still fairly hot, add pads of butter one at a time to your liking. (Tip: The more the merrier!) Mash until there are still some dime-sized pieces of tater. This is a crowd pleaser because the flavors are exotic and they are purple. But truly they are no harder to make than any other mashies.

You want to cook the mushrooms on medium high heat to get a little color on the sides, when they are colorful but still tender, remove from heat and toss in some fresh herbs: Rosemary or thyme do nicely. The greens ought to cook over medium heat and, once fully wilted, they are ready for a dollop of mustard and a stir.

The meat should be flipped once at about five minutes – remember the grill is hot – then cooked until palm-tender (medium) over slightly lower heat for the remainder. Guess what?  You’re done.

Plate up with the sautéed mushrooms over the steak (one more tip: I like to add a thin layer of cream-style horseradish over the steak under the ‘shrooms) and pop some champagne or a nice pinot noir.

That delicious-looking roasted beet salad in the background we will save for another blog.

Thanks for reading and bon appetit!

Matt Devlin Fish It Missoula BioMatt Devlin is a fishing guide in Missoula MT.  He enjoys dry flies, “floating with the bros”, attempting to get his labradoodle to chase tennis balls, and writing.