Bistecca alla Fiorentina (Florentine Steak Platter) with Romesco Sauce and Roasted Vegetables. This dinner party favorite is colorful, zesty, and luxurious!
One thing I’ve noticed about American cooks, is that most of us stick to traditional recipes for Thanksgiving, yet Christmas seems to be fair game!
We want to make a lavish holiday meal for our family and friends, but we’re open to new possibilities.
That’s where I come in… I’m the ambassador of possibilities. *wink*
What have you served your family for Christmas dinner the last few years?
I would like to offer a suggestion… Why not go Italian this year?
And by Italian, I mean Tuscan. Let’s impress our loved one with a giant Bistecca alla Fiorentina (Florentine Steak Platter.)
What is Bistecca alla Fiorentina?
Classic Steak Florentine (or Florentine Steak) is a dazzling Tuscan steak recipe involving just a handful of simple ingredients.
- Huge thick-cut Porterhouse steaks with glorious marbled fat
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme, or sage
Bistecca alla Fiorentina can be paired with nearly anything: creamy polenta, pasta dishes, grilled or pickled vegetables, and more.
However, today’s recipe includes Florentine Steak with Roasted Vegetables and a zesty red pepper Romesco Sauce.
What is Romesco Sauce?
You might be thinking… Wait, Rome isn’t in Tuscany.
And you would be right. However, Romesco Sauce is not Roman, Tuscan, or Italian at all. It actually originated in a Spanish province.
Yet this simple puree of grilled or roasted piquillo peppers, fresh walnuts, garlic, sherry, and smoked paprika is so similar to a red pesto sauce, it’s the perfect complement to Bistecca alla Fiorentina.
However, unlike pesto, is does not contain cheese, keeping this entire recipe dairy free.
Bistecca alla Fiorentina (Florentine Steak Platter)
Florentine Steak is just that… Steaks done Florence-style.
Yet today we’re building a holiday platter around the steaks with roasted beets, potatoes, fennel, and brussels sprouts.
The platter is served with Romesco Sauce, to enjoy with both the steak and the veggies, and with fresh lemon wedges for acidic pop!
How Do You Cook a Florentine Steak?
How do you make Tuscan Steak? So glad you asked.
Traditionally Bistecca alla Fiorentina is grilled outdoors, over open flame. However, this time of year you may not want to stand outside, by your grill, in a foot of fluffy snow.
Therefore we have provided both grilling and oven-broiling instructions in the recipe below. And believe it or not, the broiled Steak Florentine comes out just as juicy!
How To Cook a Steak in the Oven
We’ve all heard rumors about how to cook a perfect steak. Some believe this can only be done in a cast iron skillet, while others insists on a charcoal grill.
However, I have found the easiest and most fool-proof method of cooking a steak takes place in the oven.
Why? The oven offers better consistent heat, from all sides, than a grill or stovetop. Just follow 3 simple steps to make amazing steaks in the oven…
- Brush with oil – Coat the steaks in a very light layer of high-heat oil. Then season the steaks generously on both sides.
- Broil first – Preheat the oven to broil, moving the rack 6+ inches below the top heat source. Place a large rimmed baking sheet in the oven to preheat and act as the cooking surface. Once the pan is very hot, broil the steaks for just a few minutes per side to caramelize the exterior.
- Roast second – With thick-cut steaks (as all steaks should be) broiling alone doesn’t allow quite enough oven time to cook the center of the beef. Therefore, turn down the oven and roast the steaks just a few minutes longer.
Get The Complete Printable Bistecca alla Fiorentina (Florentine Steak Platter) Recipe Below!
This Bistecca alla Fiorentina (Florentine Steak Platter) would make a fabulous holiday dinner for 6 to 8 people on its own.
Although, here are a few Italian add-on suggestions to expand your meal!
- Green Christmas Risotto
- Creamy Polenta with Shrimp
- Pappa al Pomodoro (Chunky Tomato Soup)
- Fluffy Focaccia Bread
- Christmas Fettuccine Alfredo
- Orecchiette with Peas and Bacon
- Grilled Octopus Brushetta
- Affogato Cake
Bistecca alla Fiorentina
- 2 pounds mini potatoes
- 3 large beets (red or golden)
- 1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts
- 2 large fennel bulbs
- 1 head garlic
- 3-4 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Peel the beets and cut them into 1-inch chunks. Trim the Brussels sprouts. Cut the stems off the fennel bulbs. Then cut the bulbs in half, remove the cores, and cut the fennel into wedges. Finally cut the top off a whole head of garlic to expose the garlic cloves.
Place the potatoes, beets, and garlic head on a large rimmed baking sheet. Toss with oil, then salt and pepper generously. Spread the vegetables out in a single layer. Roast for 15 minutes.
Add the Brussels sprouts and fennel to the baking sheet. Toss to coat with the oil on the pan. Add the rosemary sprigs to the pan and place back in the oven for another 20-25 minutes, until the beets are fork-tender.
Meanwhile, drain the piquillo peppers and place them in the food processor. Add the walnuts, garlic, and all remaining ingredients for the sauce. Pulse until very smooth. Then taste, and salt and pepper as needed.
Pat the steaks dry on both sides. Then brush them lightly oil. Sprinkle with chopped rosemary, and salt and pepper generously on both sides.
If you have two ovens, preheat the second oven to broil and lower the top rack 6-7 inches below the broiler. If you are using one oven start the steaks after the vegetables have finished roasting.
Place a clean large rimmed baking sheet (13x18 inch) on the top rack to preheat. Once hot, carefully place the steaks on the hot baking pan and close the oven. Broil for 4 minutes per side, to caramelize. Then turn the oven down to 450 degrees F, and roast another 8-12 minutes (flipping once) until you reach your desired interior temperature. (120 degrees F for rare, 130 for medium-rare, 140 for medium.)
Allow the steaks to rest while you build the Bistecca alla Fiorentina platter. Transfer the roasted vegetables to a large serving platter. Squeeze the roasted garlic over the top. Scoop the Romesco Sauce into a bowl and add it to the platter. Place the steaks on top, and add lemon wedges to the platter. Serve warm.
Florentine Steaks are traditionally grilled, yet this recipe is adapted for winter holiday cooking. If you are willing to stand out in the cold, grill the steaks on high heat for 5 minutes per side. Then lower the heat to medium and grill another 3 minutes per side. Use this how to post to determine the doneness of your steaks.
Although the steaks are gorgeous whole and uncut, you can stretch your steaks for a larger groups, by cutting the meat off the bones and slicing it before placing it on the platter.