I’ve got really early memories of my dad making steak sandwiches, which were absolutely gorgeous and always such a treat. In this recipe I want to take the joy of a steak sandwich to the next level by kind of taking the mighty steak off its pedestal a bit and putting most of the focus on awesome onions, to create the best steak sandwich ever.


  • 400g flank skirt steak or bavette

  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary

  • 2 large onions

  • 5 fresh bay leaves

  • 20g unsalted butter

  • olive oil

  • 70g dark brown sugar

  • 125ml red wine vinegar

  • 1 ciabatta loaf

  • extra virgin olive oil

  • optional: English mustard

  • ½ a lemon

  • 1 handful of watercress


  • 1.

    Remove the steak from the fridge and let it come to room temperature, pick over the rosemary leaves, then cover it with greaseproof paper and bash it with the base of a pan to tenderize and make it all roughly the same thickness. Meanwhile, peel the onions, also removing the first layer of flesh (reserve this for a soup or stew), then slice into 2cm-thick rounds. Put the bay, butter, a lug of oil and the sugar into a  large non-stick frying pan on a medium heat. Once the butter has melted, place the onions into the pan in a single layer, season with sea salt and black pepper and cook for 5 minutes. Pour in the vinegar, pop the lid on, reduce the heat to low and cook for

  • 2.

    Around 35 minutes, or until beautifully golden and caramelized on the  bottom only, adding splashes of water to loosen, if needed.

  • 3.

    Meanwhile, pop the ciabatta into the oven, turn onto 110ºC/225ºF/gas ¼ and leave to warm through. Season the steak all over with sea salt and black pepper. Place a large non-stick heavy-bottomed pan on a high heat. Once screaming hot, drizzle the steak with olive oil, then put it into the pan and cook for 3 minutes on each side for medium, or to your liking. Remove to a plate, rest for 1 minute, then slice 1cm thick and toss through its own resting juices with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

  • 4.

    Cut the warm ciabatta in half and rub the inside of each piece in the steak resting juices. Spread on some mustard, if you like, then layer over the caramelized onions, the steak and pinches of lemon-dressed watercress. Pop the other piece of bread on top, press down lightly, carve up into decent chunks and get involved.

Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis per serving (4 servings)

  • Energy 631kj
  • Fat Total 28g
  • Saturated Fat 9g
  • Protein 28g
  • Carbohydrate 66g
  • Sugar 21g
  • Sodium 567mg

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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