Friday, September 23, 2011

Balsamic Steak Wraps with Avocado, Spinach and Gorgonzola



We had a few days of chilly-toe fall weather, followed by more hot summery days, on which I wore my new boots to work to ward off the morning chill, only to be burning up by lunchtime.  I'm so confused how to dress for work right now!  Still, though, new boots make me happy, even if it was too hot for them.  Since it's not quite fall yet, but not summer anymore, I find myself torn between wanting to start poring over all my holiday recipes, while at the same time not wanting to heat up the kitchen too much with baking.  The urge to bake usually takes precedence, though, and I'm tempted to bake up all sorts of goodies, while at the same time feeling the need to get to the gym and work out more and get in better shape!  Oh, there are so many conflicts of interest when you love to cook and bake.

Ever since we bought our bottle of aged balsamic vinegar during my birthday weekend to the Colorado wine country of Paonia, I've been looking for ways to add it to all kinds of dishes.  It's so sweet and tangy, and yet savory at the same time, and complements such a variety of flavors.






I just loved the addition of the balsamic vinegar to these wraps as it really brought out the creaminess of the avocados and the tang of the Gorgonzola cheese.

These steak wraps are an easy weeknight dinner, and only took me about 20 minutes to prep and cook.  Although I would much prefer a nice cut of steak for these (tenderloin would be best, but that's pretty fancy for a weeknight dinner), seared medium rare and thinly sliced, I was trying to save money and went with the cheap packages of "stir-fry steak".  It cooks up very quickly, and worked really well for these wraps.






If you think about it the night before, go ahead and marinate your steak.  I forgot until the evening I was planning to make them, so only marinated the steak for about 2 hours.  This is also a great recipe for leftovers to take to work the next day - as long as you're patient enough to pack everything into individual zip-lock bags to assemble the wrap for lunch the next day - I'm not a fan of sandwiches or wraps made too far in advance since they tend to get soggy, so they are best assembled right before eating.





Balsamic Steak Wraps with Avocado, Spinach and Gorgonzola
  • 1 pound steak
  • 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 avocados, sliced
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 ounces crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
  • 4 tortilla wraps (I like the Mission brand spinach wraps)
First, marinate the steak in 2 tablespoons of the balsamic vinegar and olive oil, with a pinch of salt and pepper.  Place in a zip-lock bag and marinate for two hours or overnight.

Make a balsamic aioli by combining the mayonnaise with the other two tablespoons balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and salt and pepper to taste.  Set aside, and prep the remaining vegetables.

Heat a skillet over medium high heat and cook the steak (if using a cut such as tenderloin, strip, sirloin, etc, sear on each side for 4-5 minutes (for medium rare), then let rest for 5 minutes on a cutting board before slicing).  The pre-sliced stir-fry steak will cook very quickly - don't overcook.

Spread 2 tablespoons of the balsamic aioli on each wrap, and refrigerate any leftover aioli.  Divide the steak, avocado, spinach, tomatoes, onion and Gorgonzola between the wraps.  Roll up and secure with toothpicks.

Eat and enjoy - you'll love these!