Category Archives: beef

beef pesto

I know I know, how original: the most famous recipe of Peter Gordon’s Sugar Club restaurant. But it is intensely flavoured and delicious. Serves 6.

beef fillet, 1.2 – 1.5 kg
400 ml tamari
250 ml cider vinegar
1 red chilli
6 cloves of garlic, peeled

Put tamari, vinegar, chilli and garlic in a blender and puree. Marinate beef in this for 2 – 7 days, covered, in the fridge. Turn every 12 hours.

Take up, drain and dry with a cloth. Cut into 6 equal pieces. Cut the larger end lengthwise so it is of similar thickness to the others.  Put in a warm place to reach room temperature

Heat a cast iron griddle or grill until very hot, lightly oil the fillet on the cut sides and grill for no more than 2 minutes each side, longer if you like it well done. Remember the acid (vinegar) in the marinade has done a lot of the ‘cooking’ for you already. Rest for a few minutes.

This can come out cool and harsh flavoured, because time on the heat is so short, whereas you want warm, relaxed meat that feels soft in the mouth. I am going to try finishing it in a slow oven next time, followed by a long rest.

Serve with pesto on top.

Beef burgers (makes 5)

The essence of a burger is not overcooking it.

750 g beef skirt, or another cheap, lean cut with 10 – 20 % fat
1 tsp salt
1/3 tsp black pepper

Trim the meat of any gristle, dry thoroughly and cut into 25 mm pieces, including the fat. Put 200 g portions into food processor with the steel blade and coarsely mince with twenty 1-second pulses. Note the colder the meat is, the better it will mince. Spread the meat out thinly and sprinkle seasonings over then mix them in thoroughly with your hands.

The Danish option: finely chop 4 tb capers and add.

Take 150 g portions and press tightly into a ball with your hands, then slowly squeeze flat between your palms, keeping the edge in shape with your fingertips. Aim for a thickness of 18 – 25 mm. Make a shallow depression in the middle of the top side with your fingers, like the beginning of a doughnut. This will disappear as the burger cooks ensuring even thickness. Brush both sides with oil and either barbecue over moderate heat or fry in a lightly oiled cast-iron pan over moderately high heat. Allow 4 mins for the first side then 2 for the flip, giving a burger just cooked through. Rest a few minutes.

For those secret admirers of McD’s, eating these with thinly sliced gherkins, mayo and ketchup will  pretty much get you there.

Boeuf bourguigon (serves 6)

Staying in a classic French vein, this bears reheating and freezing.

200 g lardons (mild unsmoked bacon)
1 tb oil
1.2 kg lean stewing beef, cut in 50 mm cubes, dry with paper towels
1 carrot, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 tb flour
1 bottle full-bodied red wine
at least 500 ml beef stock
1 tb tomato paste
2 cloves garlice, crushed
1/2 tsp thyme
bay leaf
18 – 24 small onions, peeled
1 1/2 tb butter
1 1/2 tb oil
125 ml beef stock or wine
bouquet garni
400 g button mushrooms
2 tb butter
1 tb oil

In a large casserole saute lardons in the oil, remove with a slotted spoon. Saute beef, a few pieces at a time until browned on all sides, set aside. Brown the vegetables. Pour out the fat and return the bacon and beef, add salt and pepper, add the flour and toss lightly to coat. Put in 230’C oven for 4 minutes. Toss the meat and return for a further 4 minutes. (This browns the flour). Remove casserole and reduce oven to 165’C.

Add wine and stock to just cover the meat, add tomato paste, garlic, herbs. Bring to simmer on the stove, cover and return to oven. Simmer slowly for at least 2 1/2 hours. The meat is done when a fork pierces it easily.

Saute onions in butter & oil over moderate heat for about 10 mins until onions are evenly brown. Add braising liquid & bouquet garni, cover and simmer slowly for 45 mins until onions are tender but retain their shape, and liquid has evapourated.

Saute mushrooms carefully in butter, oil and a sprinkling of salt over a high heat, tossing frequently, for around 5 minutes. Remove them from heat as soon as they are brown, they should not give up any liquid.

Tip casserole into a sieve, wash out and return the beef and bacon to it. Add onions and mushrooms. Simmer sauce for a couple of minutes, skimming off the fat. There should be about 600 ml of sauce thick enough to coat a spoon. Adjust seasoning. Pour back into the casserole, bring back to a simmer for a couple of minutes. Serve with buttered noodles or potatoes.

Source: Julia Child ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’

roast beef & variations

1,5 kg beef (minimum) blade chuck or top sirloin)
salt, pepper
olive oil

Take beef out of the fridge a couple of hours before cooking so that it can warm up to room temperature. Liberally salt, pepper and rub with generous amounts of mustard. Preheat oven to 80 degrees Celsius. Sear beef with olive oil in a heavy pan on very high heat on all sides. Sit on a roasting rack in a tray not much bigger than the beef. Slow roast until internal temperature reaches 55 degrees Celsius. (This takes approximately 30 mins for every 500 grs of meat.) Remove from oven, cover and let stand for 30 minutes.

Another recipe: Heston Blumenthal sears the beef with a blow torch and cooks it at an extremely low 55 degrees for about 20 hours.

With warm Belugal lentils
Cut cold beef into thin slices and serve on top of Warm Beluga Lentil Salad and drizzle with Austrian pumpkin seed oil.

Very thinly slice cold roast beef and cut into strips. Place on top of a bowl of steaming hot Japanese sticky rice, this will warm the beef. Sprinkle with grated horseradish or wasabi. Drizzle with a Japanese sauce made of 50 ml mirin, 40 ml soya sauce, a grated 2 cm piece of ginger and a dash of lime or lemon juice.

Thin slices on toasted bread, with horseradish and fleur de sel.

Beef Gulasch – Rindsgulasch (serves 4)

70g butter
400g onion, finely chopped (can be coarse-grated in a food processor)
1 tb Hungarian rose paprika
some concentrated tomato puree (optional, to improve colour)
1 tb red wine vinegar
550g beef, not too lean
1/2 tsp caraway seeds
2 cloves garlic, ground to a paste
1 tb flour

Sauté onions slowly without browning them. Add paprika and vinegar, then the meat, followed by caraway, a little majoram, garlic and salt. Cover with water or stock and simmer. Add more liquid if necessary. Dust with flour to thicken. Bring to the boil once more.

[try coating meat in the paprika before adding]

Serve with boiled potatoes, home-made Nockerln or crusty white bread rolls.

The onions have to be chopped as fine as possible and be fried on low heat as long as possible without browning. Then they need to be boiled in the Gulash until they disintegrate completely. That’s the trick for a good gulasch, plenty of onions that have completely dissolved in the sauce, thickening and flavouring it at the same time…

And a Gulasch gets better with time and repeated re-heating. So make it a couple of days in advance and reheat it once a day.

Saftgulasch is prepared in the same way but with equal amounts of onion and meat. Hungarian Gulasch is prepared in the same way but with potatoes that are cooked together with the meat.

Source: Georg