Beef cheeks with beetroot puree, confit baby beets and turnips
( SERVES 10 )
Photo by Tam West
This recipe from Auckland restaurant Little Jimmy is a rich, sticky slow-cooked dish with a great beef flavour and meat that is meltingly tender. Chef Russell Billing uses his own master stock for the recipe, but quality beef stock is a good alternative. For more at Little Jimmy, see Ray McVinnie's interview with Russell here.
Confit baby beets and turnips
- Heat oven to 160C. Sear beef in a very hot frying pan then transfer to a deep casserole dish. Cover with boiling stock cover and braise for three hours or until tender.
- For the puree, place the beets, skin on, in a pot with the sugar, vinegar, salt and enough cold water to cover. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature in the cooking liquid before removing — this helps soak up the colour.
- Gently rub the skin off the beets and place in a blender with 100ml of the cooking liquid and the oil, and blend to a fine puree. Check for seasoning.
- Place all the confit ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a super-slow, very gentle simmer for 45 minutes. Turn off heat and leave to cool then peel by gently rubbing off the skin. Leave the skin on the turnip (ensure you give them a good scrub under cold water before cooking).
- To serve, smear a good couple of tablespoons of beetroot puree on a flat plate. Top with snow pea tendrils or sprouts.
- Heat the beef cheeks in a frying pan with a bit of the stock to just cover, allowing the stock to reduce until the cheeks are sticky and glossy.
- Place the cheeks on the snow pea tendrils. Scatter a few turnips and beets on the plate.