Fresh Citrus Beef and Pesto Salad

Fresh Citrus Beef and Pesto Salad

Fresh Citrus Beef and Pesto Salad

Fresh flavours make a great taste. This recipe is economical: it stretches to feed the hungry! This is a colourful dish, with the combination of peppers and beans. The addition of the citrus with the basil transports it to the sublime.
Serves 4 – 6

 Ingredients Fresh Citrus Beef and Pesto Salad:

  • 1 red pepper, halved; discard seeds
  • 1 yellow pepper, halved; discard seeds
  • 100 g fresh green beans, topped and tailed, cut into 2 cm lengths
  • 200 g beef fillet steak, cut 2.5 – 3 cm thick
  • Salt and freshly-ground black pepper
  • 200 g uncooked pasta – spirals, penne, or macaroni
  • 6 spring onions, finely chopped
  • 100 g mushrooms, wiped, and cut into quarters

Citrus Basil Pesto:

  • 250 ml fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 25 ml pumpkin or sunflower seeds
  • 15 ml orange and lemon zest
  • 50 ml olive oil
  • 15 ml fresh orange juice
  • 15 ml fresh lemon juice


  1. Microwave pepper halves for 5 minutes. This will speed up the grilling process.
  2. Grill peppers under a hot grill, skin side-up, until skin turns black, and blisters. Cool under a damp tea towel or in a plastic bag; then remove charred skin. Dice the peppers.
  3. Microwave green beans with 25 ml water for 2 – 3 minutes on 100% power. Drain, and set aside.
  4. Steak: Spray a non-stick frying pan with non-stick cooking spray. Place on hob over moderate to high heat. When hot, place steak in pan; cook for 3 minutes each side.
  5. Remove, and set aside for 5 minutes, before cutting into thin strips.
  6. Season steak to taste.
  7. Pesto: Place chopped basil, garlic, pumpkin seeds, and citrus zest in a food processor or mini chopper. Process for a minute or two; add the oil, lemon, and orange juice. Process again, until you reach the desired consistency.
  8. Season to taste.
  9. Pasta: Cook pasta in a large pan of rapidly boiling salted water, until al dente.
  10. Drain, and toss with the pesto in a large bowl.
  11. Add in beans, spring onions, and mushrooms.
  12. Add chopped peppers and steak strips to the penne; toss to distribute evenly.
  13. Chill, or serve at room temperature. Garnish with extra, fresh basil leaves.

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