Labor Day typically marks the official end of summer, with back-to-school in full swing and shorter days and cooler temperatures on the horizon. In a year where nothing seems typical, we want to help you take a moment to enjoy the simpler things in life this Labor Day – to relax and reflect on a year’s worth of hard work with a small gathering of friends & family. While we can’t exactly take part in fall’s typical fare, such as tailgate parties and football games, and fall carnivals, we can still take comfort in cooking a dang good meal at home. Here are a few recipes to bring on the fall fun with local, seasonal ingredients.
Bacon Wrapped Filet Mignon with Chiles & Herbs
Nolan’s simple-yet-sophisticated take on a family favorite, the elegant and tender filet. This no-frills grilling method features a fresh, zesty relish and results in a flavor that’s the perfect marriage of marinade and smokiness.
Prep Time: 10 minutes, plus 3 hours to marinate the meat
Cook Time: 12 minutes
For the marinade:
- 1 cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 1 rosemary sprig
For the relish:
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- ¼ cup finely chopped red onion
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
- 1 Tbsp. diced green chiles, seeded
- 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
For the Filets:
- 8 (6-ounce) bacon wrapped filet mignon steaks
- 1-2 tsp. sea salt
- 1-2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 1-2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
Combine all of the marinade ingredients in a glass baking dish and mix well. Add the steaks and turn to coat. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 3 hours.
For the relish, combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl and mix thoroughly. Place half of the relish in a separate small bowl and set alongside the grill.
Preheat the grill to medium-high and lightly oil the grill grates.
Remove the steaks from the marinade, pat dry with heavy-duty paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with the vegetable oil.
Cook the steaks (in batches, if necessary) for 6 minutes per side for medium-rare. Baste with some of the relish mixture while cooking to ensure that the meat is beautifully caramelized.
Turn the steaks over and place them on a serving platter. Top with the remaining relish and serve.
Citrus Infused Avocado Salad with Tortilla Chips
This salsa-meets-salad creation is a Nolan favorite. The mix of citrus and sweet honey perfectly pairs with lemony cilantro, resulting in a summer staple that you can thankfully recreate year-round. Pair with some store-bought chips (homemade, if you’re so inclined) and enjoy this delicious, fresh side dish.
Prep Time: 10 minutes, plus 1 hour to chill
- 2/3 cup olive oil
- ½ cup fresh orange juice
- 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
- Juice of 2 limes
- 1 Tbsp. honey
- 2 bunches of cilantro, chopped (leaves only)
- 10 large avocados, peeled, pitted and diced
- 8 large Roma tomatoes, diced into ¾-inch cubes
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 1 lb. bag of tortilla chips
Mix the olive oil, orange juice, vinegar, lime juice, honey and cilantro in a large bowl. Add the avocado, tomatoes, salt and pepper. Mix gently. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
Serve with the tortilla chips.