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Beef fillet with croquette of shin.

Beef fillet with croquette of shin.

Something for the weekend? a fillet is my favorite cut of beef, great melting texture and easy to eat. Perfect for a dinner party if you’re using your best table manners. The fillet itself doesn’t need cooking for very long so that’s the last thing to worry about. If someone does ask you to cook the fillet well done just ask them to leave.
Read the recipe first to familiarise yourself with the process.

Preparation time:

30 minutes
Cooking time
15 minutes

Serves

4

Ingredients

  • 200g of diced beef shin
  • 600g of fillet of beef
  • 6 banana shallots
  • 1 garlic bulb
  • 1 star anise
  • 8 asparagus spears
  • a bunch of pea shoots or watercress
  • 1 stick of celery
  • 3 thick carrots
  • a few sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 bag of spinach
  • half a bottle of red wine
  • 200g of gnocchi blanched
  • 1 bottle rapeseed oil
  • horseradish
  • creme fraiche
  • 1 egg
  • 100g plain flour
  • 100g of panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 pack of unsalted butter
  • Sugar
  • Prepping

    Start by finely dicing 1 carrot, 2 shallots, celery stick, slice the garlic bulb in half horizontally and pop out the halves of one side and dice these, save the other half for later and brown everything off in the pan using a little rapeseed oil. Mix this in with the diced shin of beef and then season, roast this in the oven on 180c for about 20 minutes or until the beef is starting to brown. Once browned add to the pan with the red wine, some of the thyme and star anise – you could tie some butchers string around the star anise so its easy to fish out afterward. You need to simmer the shin for about 2 hours or until falling apart. When you think its ready strain the juices into a pan through a sieve and set aside. Allow the shin to cool until you can handle it easily and now roll into a sausage shape on a piece of cling film then roll the cling film over and over around the shin then twist the ends to create a firm cylinder and now chill until set.

    While the shin of beef is simmering you can start the rest of the prep so peel and slice the carrots in half, then at an angle to get 4 wedges out of each carrot – blanch these until soft with a teaspoon of sugar and set aside.

    Grate the horseradish into the creme fraiche and mix together
    Slice the 4 shallots in half lengthways, brush the flesh with oil and place flesh side down on a roasting tray – take the remaining half of the garlic bulb and also brush with oil then face down – roast for about 15 minutes until softened and set aside.

    Wilt the spinach with a little water and butter and season
    simmer the juices from the shin of beef until it has reduced by about half and pass through a muslin cloth if you have one to remove the impurities

    Rub the fillet of beef with oil all over and then place in a hot pan, turning to seal every side – add in a nob of butter with some thyme to baste – place on a baking tray.
    Snap the asparagus somewhere towards the end where the natural break is and blanch in boiling salted water for 30 seconds then set aside
    plating

    Take the shin of beef out of the fridge and slice with the cling film still on into 4 barrels or whatever is easier, you may get 8 if it is a thin roll. Now toss the beef through the flour, then into the egg and then finally into the breadcrumbs ready for frying in the deep fat fryer.

    Place the fillet beef on a tray and cook for about 20 minutes then leave to rest somewhere warm covered in foil for about 30 minutes.

    Deep fry the croquettes for about 6 minutes on 170c
    Bring the sauce to a quick boil and whisk in a nob of butter
    Melt some butter in a pan and warm through the shallots, asparagus, spinach, roasted garlic, and carrots.
    Slice the fillet of beef into 4, it should be pink without any juices leaking out.

    Arrange everything nicely on the plate and serve the sauce in a little jug and garnish with horseradish cream and pea shoots or watercress.