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 Steak Salad & Charred Greens with GF Beer Vinaigrette and a Little on Navigating the Gluten-Free Beer World

Steak Salad & Charred Greens with GF Beer Vinaigrette and a Little on Navigating the Gluten-Free Beer World

I get a lot of flack from the males in my family about writing a blog on salads and healthy eating. Which I think is crazy considering mostly everyone in the fam is on some sort of special diet.  One day while chatting with my brother-in-law I asked what it would take to make a salad more appealing to men?... (I,m always baffled by how crazy picky my brother-in-laws are, cause I eat everything...)... The answer I received, beer and meat. Since last week was National Craft Beer Week, I set out to make a delicious moderately healthy gluten-free, dairy-free salad everyone enjoys even the pickiest of eaters. This mission started out with an eye-opening educational lesson in gluten-free beer from a local liquor store and a lot of taste testing. Whoo!

One afternoon last week, a "beer expert" at Tipsy's Liquor World schooled me on the different types of gluten free beers out there. I had no idea some gluten free beer was not celiac friendly and could still cause damage to the really sensitive. I learned there are three types of gluten free beer and the type is based on how and where the beer is produced.

The first type is Gluten Reduced Beer. Gluten reduced means it is still produced with a gluten containing grain like barley or rye, but they add special enzymes to break down the gluten protein to 20 parts per million or less, but it doesn't completely remove the gluten from the final product. These beers may be fine for some on a gluten free diet, but may still be harmful to those with celiacs or severe gluten allergies. Since this beer starts with a gluten containing grain, the FDA will not allow these brewers to use the "Gluten Free Label" on the bottle. The producers of gluten reduced beer use labeling such as "Gluten-Friendly," "Crafted to be Gluten-Free," or "Gluten-Safe." These labels made searching for a celiac friendly beer challenging and confusing to find.

The second type is gluten free beer. This beer is made using gluten free grains such as sorghum, millet, rice, corn, or buckwheat, but produced on the same lines as gluten containing beer. Although the brewing facility takes precautions in cleaning the production line to remove gluten, there is still a possibility of cross contamination.   

The third type of beer is Dedicated Gluten Free Beer. This beer is made in an all gluten free facility where there are no gluten containing grains ever. I also noticed the Holidaily gluten free beer had a "Certified Gluten Free" Seal on the can which tells me it's 100% safe in my house and for my celiac husband to consume. 

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Here is a list of Dedicated Gluten Free Brewers -

Holidaily Brewing Company, Golden, CO
Goldfish Brewing Company, Seattle, WA
Ground Breaker Brewing, Portland, OR
Moonshrimp Brewing, Portland, OR
Burning Brother's Brewing, St. Paul, MN

Can you believe there are only 5 in the U.S.?

These are the only Dedicated Gluten Free Craft Brewers I could find, so we are very lucky to have one right here in Golden, Colorado. 

After getting educated in gluten-free beer, and since Colorado has the 2nd most craft breweries of any state in the country I wanted to stick to the gluten free options close to home. Since the options are pretty limited I grabbed two kinds of Holidaily, Favorite Blond and Buckwit Belgian, Boulder based New Planet (makes gluten removed and gluten free beer) Blonde Ale, and Le Chene an oak barrel aged hard cider Denver Company, Stem Cider. All Gluten free options.

I really enjoyed the Holidaily Favorite Blonde, in my opinion it's the best gluten free beer I've had. 

This is a delicious multistep salad, but can be made quicker if you eliminate charring the greens. Charred greens are amazing if you haven't tried them, but if you're in a pinch you can use any greens you prefer. I used romaine, kale, and endive because of they cook up really well on the grill.  

Also, if you do not suffer from gluten allergies, feel free to substitute any blond ale in this dressing, but I highly recommend this beer for the gluten free crowd. It's worth the trip out to Golden to sip and savor on the Holidaily patio. On the weekends they have food trucks with plenty of gluten free options you can enjoy in the mountain setting.   


Steak Salad with Charred Greens and GF Beer Vinaigrette

Serves 2 (The little one didn't get beer vinaigrette)

Beer Vinaigrette/Marinade
8 oz dedicated gluten free beer (I used Favorite Blonde by Holidaily Brewing Company)
1 large shallot
1 cup avocado oil (olive oil works too)
1 teaspoon lemon zest (approx. half lemon)
1 teaspoon Lime zest, (approx. half lime)
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons lime juice
4 teaspoons dijon mustard
2 Tablespoons coconut nectar (honey or agave would work here too)
Salt and Pepper to taste

Use half to marinate your beef, the other half set aside to dress your salad later. Will last up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

1/2 bunch Romaine
1/2 bunch Kale
1/4 bunch Endive
2 Radish, sliced thin
Handful Grape Tomatoes, halved
1/4 Red Onion (I grilled a half red onion and save the rest for later) 
1 Avocado
1 pound skirt steak
2 fried eggs (optional)


Combine all the ingredients in a 16 oz mason jar and combine with an immersion blender. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.

Marinate your steak in half of the dressing for a minimum of an hour up to 24 hours. Remove the base of the romaine, rinse, and dry. Leave whole for grilling. Rinse and remove the stems of the kale and dry. Try to leave kale in large pieces so it won't fall through the grill rack. Rinse and dry endive. Place all the prepared lettuces in a ziploc bag or large bowl with some avocado oil and tossed them around till they are well coated and set them aside until ready to place on the grill. Prepare the remainder of your vegetables. 

Cook your steak on a medium high grill for about 8 minutes on each side or until it reaches an internal temperature of 140 degrees for medium steak or up to 150 for a well done steak. I like it just between so 145 degrees is a good temp for me. This is also a good time to throw the red onion on the grill for a nice char. Pull from the grill once the onion is cooked to your liking, usually grill marks on both sides. Once you pull your steak off the grill let it rest for about 10 minutes before slicing against the grain into strips. While your steak is resting, take your oiled greens and place them in a single layer on the hot grill. Grill them for about a minute on each side or till they are charred around the edges. Once the greens are prepared, I cut them slightly smaller before constructing the salad.  

Place all your greens into a big bowl, add your avocado, halved tomatoes, charred red onion, and radish and toss together with 2 tablespoons (or desired amount) of dressing. Portion into two bowls and top with your sliced steak and fried egg, There you have it, deliciousness on your plate! 

This was not sponsored by Holidaily Brewing Co. or any other product used in this post. This was written using my own opinions and experiences. 

If you'd like to visit the Holidaily Brewing Co. they are located on 801 Brickyard Cir. in Golden, CO.

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