Thursday, February 14, 2008

Cult Steak and Irish Mash

I have wanted steak and mash for yonks. A simple, good piece of meat, cooked to juicy beefy perfection. Mash, maybe with a twist in the form of Heston Blumenthal's Irish mash. And it was the perfect excuse to try out an ingredient I'd heard about on The Cook and The Chef but couldn't find at home, yet here is in abundance: samphire.

I also thought it was time to try the now-infamous "choice into Gucci prime" salting method started by Steamy Kitchen, whereby you heavily salt steak and let it rest for between 15 minutes and one hour. The steak sucks in the salt, which then draws out the moisture. But then the steak drinks in the salt water - osmosis? - and leaves the meat tender and seasoned throughout.

And it absolutely works. The steak was lightly salted, juicy and a gorgeous aged deep red, with a lovely crust. I will definitely be doing my steaks like this from now.
Heston's Irish mash is made by cooking chopped spring onions in a little milk for 3 minutes so they still have bite, then adding the onions and onion milk to mash. His is of course butter-rich (250g for 4-6 people) but it doesn't need more than a tablespoon.

As for the samphire, these beautiful salty, crunchy beans only need to be poached in unsalted boiling water for a few minutes. They went very well with the dish.


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