I returned to the Hyett household a few months ago for some more creative cooking in their gorgeous new kitchen. This time it was Gary’s turn to show us how handy he was in an apron. His chosen dish was Spiced Beef Olives with Aubergines by Tom Kerridge from his book Best Ever Dishes.
Now I had not heard of a beef olive before this and was surprised to find that there are actually no olives in this recipe at all….you learn something new everyday. After much deliberation and many trips to the shops, Gary soon worked out that the type of string to use to wrap the beef up is not that important. If you are unable to get hold of any kitchen string then normal string will suffice. The finished dish was scrumptious, well done Gary. As usual scroll to the bottom for the recipe.
The beef was closely followed by a lovely Lemon Posset with Fennel Biscotti, also by Tom Kerridge, for dessert. Gary handed the apron back to Lauren for this one. One word….delicious!
Olive oil, for frying
250g minced beef
75g Milano salami, diced
2 tablespoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons cracked black pepper
150g drained tinned kidney beans, rinsed
250ml beef stock
4 x 200g sirloin or rump steaks, sinew and fat removed
Knob of butter
1 quantity of Tomato sauce (see below)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the aubergines
2 large aubergines
1 teaspoon cornflour
1 teaspoon plain flour
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon salt
Vegetable oil, for frying
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
Lemon wedges, to serve
Green salad, to serve
First, make the beef mince stuffing. Warm a large saucepan over a medium heat and pour in a little olive oil. Add the beef mince and fry, stirring frequently, until the meat has taken on a lovely dark colour and is quite toasted and crispy. Drain the mince in a colander and put the pan back on the heat.
Add a little more oil and fry the diced salami until it starts to crisp up. Stir in the cumin seeds and black pepper then tip the beef back into the pan along with the kidney beans. Pour in the beef stock and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down to a simmer and cook until the stock has reduced and you have a thick, rich mixture. Remove from the heat, place in a clean container, then cover and refrigerate until needed. It will keep quite well in the fridge for a couple of days.
Lay a sheet of cling film on a chopping board and place one of the steaks on top of it. Cover with a second piece of cling film and bash the steak out very thinly with a meat tenderiser or a rolling pin. Repeat this process with the other three steaks. Spoon an equal amount of the spiced beef on to each steak and roll up the steak into a cylinder, overlapping the edges slightly. Secure by tying with kitchen string. Place the rolled and tied beef olives in the fridge to rest for 1-2 hours.
When you’re ready to cook the beef olives, place a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat and drizzle in a little oil. Add the knob of butter and wait until it starts to foam. Season the beef olives and place them in the pan. Cook until nicely coloured all over – this should take 5-8 minutes. Remove and rest on a warm plate.
Heat the tomato sauce (see below). Slice the aubergines into 1cm-thick discs. Mix together the cornflour, plain flour, cumin, cayenne pepper and salt. Dust the aubergines slices with the mix.
Warm a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan over a medium heat and pour in a generous splash of oil. Shallow-fry the aubergine slices until golden on both sides and soft in the middle. You will probably have do this in batches so they crisp – don’t crowd the pan otherwise they will stew. Remove and drain on kitchen paper.
Sprinkle the aubergines slices with parsley and black pepper. Remove the string from the beef olives and serve with the tomato sauce, aubergines, lemon wedges and a green salad.
This can be pre-prepared or alternatively, if short for time, use a ready-made shop bought sauce.
1kg ripe plum tomatoes, halved lengthways
50g caster sugar
100ml extra virgin olive oil
1 Spanish onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 red chillies, diced – seeds and all
Pinch of saffron threads
100ml white wine
75ml red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
Place the tomatoes in a roasting tin, sprinkle them with the sugar and roast for 20-30 minutes until they are slightly caramelised and very soft. Set aside.
Warm the olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring from time to time, until the onions are soft and have taken on a bit of colour – about 15 minutes. Stir in the chillies and saffron and cook for a further 1-2 minutes. Add the wine, vinegar and smoked paprika. Scrape in the roasted tomatoes and any juice that has accumulated in the tin. Cook gently on a low heat for 40-45 minutes, stirring from time to time. Season then puree in a blender or food processor until very smooth. Pass through a fine sieve into a clean bowl.