I bet that August is probably considered the dog days of summer in many parts of the country. But here in Michigan, it’s one of my favorite months, as far as eating goes at least. Fresh cherries are winding down their season, but still available, and sweet corn is at it’s peak. In fact, I made some corn on the cob for friends this past weekend, and it was so sweet that it almost tasted like candy.
I wanted to take both of these sweet local favorites and turn them into a light dinner perfect for this time of year. I started with a base of mixed greens, then topped them with a bit of chopped hard boiled egg, and slices of creamy fresh mozzarella cheese. I boosted the protein with thinly sliced grilled flank steak, and then finished the plates with halved fresh cherries and grilled sweet corn kernels.
I stuck with the cherry theme for the dressing/marinade, by using my blender to buzz up a vinaigrette using balsamic vinegar and cherries. I used some of the cherry vinaigrette as a marinade for the steak, and kept the remainder for drizzling on the salads. August might be the end of the summer, but my plate certainly doesn’t reflect the fact that anything is winding down!
The dairy products used in this recipe were produced by members of the United Dairy Industry of Michigan. For more information on UDIM and to find out why Milk Means More, please visit their website and connect with them on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter.
For the Cherry Vinaigrette / Marinade:
- 2 cups fresh cherries, pitted
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- Pinch of kosher salt and ground black pepper
- 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
For the Salad:
- 1 flank steak (about 1-1/4 pounds)
- 2 ears sweet corn, husked
- 1 package (5 ounces) spring mix
- 4 hard boiled eggs, chopped
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
- 1 cup fresh cherries, pitted and halved
- Make the Cherry Vinaigrette/Marinade: In blender, process cherries, vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper until cherries are very finely chopped. With blender running, slowly drizzle in oil through open hole in blender lid until all oil is incorporated. Makes about 1-3/4 cups. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
- Marinate the flank steak: Place steak in shallow baking dish; pour 1 cup cherry vinaigrette/marinade over. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or up to overnight, turning once if possible.
- Preheat grill for direct grilling over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, place corn in microwave-safe baking dish; cover and microwave on high 4 minutes or until tender.
- Remove steak from marinade; discard marinade. Transfer corn and steak to grill. Cook corn 5 to 6 minutes or until lightly charred; turning occasionally. Transfer corn to plate when finished cooking; let stand 5 minutes before slicing corn kernels off ears. Cook steak 8 to 10 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 130 degrees F for medium rare, turning once. Transfer steak to cutting board; cover loosely with foil and let stand 10 minutes before thinly slicing against the grain.
- Divide spring mix between 4 plates. Top with eggs, cheese, cherries, corn kernels and sliced steak. Serve with remaining cherry vinaigrette.
Disclosure: As a Milk Means More Ambassador, this post was sponsored by The United Dairy Industry of Michigan. Posts like this help me pay for the costs associated with this blog (groceries … lots of groceries), and help support me as I pursue a career in recipe development and food photography. All opinions are 100% my own.