Capers have been (appropriately) described as “flavor bombs.” They’re salty and briny, savory and umami, packed with a distinctive flavor, and entirely delicious.
At least, their fans would insist they are delicious. Capers tend to inspire very little indifference; people love them or hate them. However, even if you’rea firmly entrenched occupant of the “hate them” camp, don’t dismiss capers just yet. While the inclusion of full capers in bagels and lox or pasta may prove to be a bit much for some people, the subtler addition of capers to a recipe can add a unique zing to a recipe it would be a shame to miss out on.
An example of just such a scenario in which a touch of caperlivens up a steak recipe—specifically bone-in New York strip and filet mignon (also referred to as tenderloin steak)—is included here.
But first, we’ll dive into the origin story of capers.
As a group, human beings have always been pretty fond of eating things and having those things taste good. As such, a lot of spices and seasonings have a storied place in the history of human cuisine, many of them dating back to early human civilizations.
Capers certainly enjoy a provenance dating back to some of the earliest stories we have from human civilizations, appearing in no less prestigious a source than the Epic of Gilgamesh. That’s even more impressive than it sounds when you consider that capers aren’t the seed, root, or leaf of an edible plant that’s been dried out, ground up, and sprinkled on something. Capers require a process.
It seems appropriate that capers are the flower buds of capparisspinosa, the caper bush or Flinder’s rose, as though its flavor was suspended and captured before it could blossom away. The too-bitter bud is salted and pickled, mellowing out the flavor into the product that many know and love.
Capers were long considered an effective carminative by the Greeks and other Mediterranean peoples (the caper bush being native to the Mediterranean). A carminative is a substance used to treat gas. However, capers were much better known for their supposed efficacy as an aphrodisiac. In fact, they became so thoroughly recognized as such that caper berries are mentioned in the Bible as an aphrodisiac.
Our interest in capers here, however, is strictly culinary. Give the following family-sized recipe a try the next time you’re in the mood for delicious food. Click on the recipe’s title for the full recipe and cooking instructions.
Recipe Suggestion: Grilled NY Strip Steak and Filet Mignon with Citrus Caper Herb Sauce
1 1/2 cups fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves
3 Tbsp orange juice
1 Tbsp drained capers
1 garlic clove
2 tsp grated fresh orange zest
1 tsp grated fresh lemon zest
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup olive oil
2 Snake River Farms’ Bone-In New York strip steaks
2 Snake River Farms’ tenderloin steak
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 large orange, cut into 8 slices
2 lemons, cut into 8 slices
1 Tbsp olive oil
For the full recipe and cooking instructions, click the link above or visit cook.snakeriverfarms.com
About Snake River Farms
Snake River Farms is a family-owned beef business that has distinguished itself for the 50 years it’s been in operation by oversight and involvement in every step of beef production, from start to finish. That total commitment to the quality of their beef has meant meeting and exceeding the highest standards of quality, sustainability, and ensuring the well-being of their animals. The experience they’ve acquired since their founding in 1968 ensures that your meat is the best quality and the most delicious, be it their tenderloin steak or dry-aged beef.
Experience the best of what beef can be at Snakeriverfarms.com