Bistecca alla Fiorentina (or ‘beefsteak Florentine style’) is the famous and super simple preparation of thick T-bone steaks on a nice hot grill. The beauty of the dish is how little is done to the high quality meat – just salt and pepper and maybe a little olive oil.
So why should we only have fun with T-bone steaks? Lobster is another perfect food made for grilling, and a simple preparation avoids messing up the quality of the meat.
This should not be confused with the crazy “florentine” preparation using spinach and cheese that is found on American menus. We owe that one to Catherine de’ Medici, the queen of France who insisted that spinach be served at every meal. She was from Florence. Thanks, Catherine!
This recipe serves 2 people.
Ingredients and Directions:
- Extra virgin olive oil
- A clove of garlic
- A pinch of red pepper flakes
- One bunch of Tuscan kale
- One cup of cooked ceci (garbanzo) beans – drained and rinsed. Use canned if freshly cooked ones are unavailable.
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 1 lemon
- Salt and pepper
- 2 lobster tails
- Chopped parsley
- 2 long thin bamboo skewers
- Mince the garlic and chop the kale width-wise into ribbons, discarding the thick stems at the bottom of the kale leaves.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat in a pot big enough to hold the chopped kale. Add the minced garlic and red pepper flakes and stir gently until the garlic starts to brown. Don’t let the garlic burn.
- Add the kale; saute until it begins to wilt. Add the chicken broth and cooked ceci beans. Cover and cook on medium-low heat for about ½ hour. Remove the lid, season with salt and pepper and allow the remaining chicken stock to mostly evaporate. Squeeze 1/2 of the lemon over the kale and mix. Adjust the salt and pepper as needed.
- In the meantime, heat your grill to medium-high heat.
- Using kitchen shears, cut the underbelly of the lobster tail down the center. Using a sharp knife, cut the lobster meat down the center but not quite all the way through.
- Crack the lobster tail open like a book. Slide a bamboo skewer width-wise through the lobster’s soft lower skin and meat. This will keep the lobster tail open during the grilling.
- Lightly brush the lobster tail with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
- Grill the lobster meat-side down for about 5 minutes, until the shells have turned bright red.
- Remove the skewer and serve over a heaping mound of the kale-and-ceci beans mixture.
- Squeeze the remaining lemon over the lobster tail and sprinkle with a little chopped garlic.