Barbecue beef fillet with curry butter. Photo: William Meppem
Barbecue beef fillet with curry butter
4 x 200g portions of prime beef fillet
Potato gratin. Photo: William Meppem
extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground pepper
For curry butter
15ml vegetable oil
1/4 white onion, finely diced
10g Indian-style curry powder
125g unsalted butter, softened
1 small handful parsley leaves
1 clove garlic
juice of 1/2 lemon
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3 anchovy fillets
1/2 tsp capers, rinsed
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground pepper
1 small handful basil leaves
1 small handful thyme leaves
1/2 tbsp ground ginger
1 egg yolk
To make the butter, heat oil in a frying pan and cook onion and curry powder over low heat until soft and fragrant. Set aside to cool. Process all butter ingredients in a food processor until just combined. Roll butter into a 3-4cm diameter log, wrap in plastic and refrigerate until firm (any unused butter can be frozen if not going to be used within a week or so).
Remove meat from the refrigerator 1 hour before cooking and season with sea salt. Brush the fillets with extra virgin olive oil, shake off excess oil and place on the barbecue. Put the steaks at a 45-degree angle to the grill bars. When halfway through cooking that side, about 2 minutes, turn the steaks 45 degrees in the opposite direction. When done, turn them over and cook the other side. (For medium rare, each side will require 4 minutes.)
Remove the fillets to a plate, cover with foil and rest in a warm place for 15 minutes.
To serve, place a spoonful of curry butter over each fillet, sprinkle with sea salt and finish with fresh pepper.
500g bintje or other waxy potatoes
250ml pure cream
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
20g unsalted butter, melted
Peel and cut the potatoes into 2mm thick slices. Place in a bowl and cover with cream to prevent discoloration. Season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
Brush the base and sides of a shallow baking tray or gratin dish with melted butter. Remove the potato slices from the cream and overlap them in lines down the dish until about 2-3 cm deep. If using a round dish put the slices down in a circle and cover in the middle with another circle of potato.
Drizzle a little cream between each layer. Pour any remaining cream over the entire dish. Bake at 180oC for 50-60 minutes, or until lightly browned and tender.
When done, cut the potato gratin into four portions and place on a plate next to your meat, or serve by placing the dish in the middle of the table.
* This is a simple gratin that is very satisfying; make sure you cook it until the potatoes are meltingly tender.
* Compound butters are a great addition to any meal. They can be frozen and then used on roasted, barbecued and sautéed meat or fish.
* Add a side dish of seasonal vegetables, such as asparagus blanched and drizzled with lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil.
* The fillet can be replaced by sirloin, rib eye or even rump. Just adjust the cooking times to suit.
SOMETHING TO DRINK
Flavours of bramble fruits, fresh plums and subtle pepper spice are delivered with the 2012 Occam's Razor ($47) from Victoria's Heathcote wine region. It has a softness that adds an extra level of joy to a quality beef fillet.
Photography: William Meppem. Styling Hannah Meppem. Food preparation by Kirsten Jenkins.