blade of beef with nettle risotto and spring
recipe comes from Chef David Everitt-Matthias and is
featured in his new book Essence
- recipes from le champignon sauvage.
many awards reflect the esteem in which he is held as
a chef. Recognised as one of Britain's leading craftsmen,
he is always in the kitchen and has never missed a service.
He is also known for his tireless experimentation with
anything from the most humble to the most expensive
ingredients, and an ability for making dishes
taste more of themselves than the original ingredient.
His food is a cross between the terroir
and modern French with very original touches. To find
out more about the restaurant he runs with his wife
you would like to find out more about his new book Essence
- recipes from le champignon sauvage then
was first introduced to blade of beef by one of my
sous chefs, Robert Clive Dixon, who I'm sure is responsible
for making it such a popular cut of meat and an addition
to restaurant menus across the country. Well, here
is my version, served with a nettle risotto. There
are several species of nettle, including white and
red dead nettles, but we use the common stinging nettle
as it is so prolific. Choose young nettles, as they
have a better flavour. The spring onions are simply
blanched, which gives a refreshing burst of water
to the palate - very welcome with a rich dish such
as this one. Do not be put off by the big piece of
gristle running through the centre of the blade of
beef. This helps with the flavour and, when cooked,
turns into a delicious jelly.
the blade of beef:
1.5 - 2kg blade of beef
125m1 olive oil
50g unsalted butter
1 carrot, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 leek, cut into 4
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 small can of stout
2 sprigs of thyme
1 bay leaf
2 litres Brown Veal or Brown Beef Stock
the sprang onion:
30 - 40 spring onions, trimmed and outer skin removed
30g unsalted butter
the nettle risotto:
250g young nettles
600ml chicken stock
50g unsalted butter
4 shallots, finely chopped
250g carnaroli risotto rice
5 spring onions, finely chopped
1 tablespoon Mascarpone cheese
any skin or fat surrounding the blade of beef.
75ml of the olive oil in a large frying pan and add
25g of the butter, followed by the meat. Cook on all
sides until golden brown, then transfer to a plate.
the chopped vegetables to the pan and cook until golden.
in the stout, stirring to scrape up the sediment from
the base of the pan.
the herbs and stock and bring to the boil.
in a casserole dish large enough to take the blade
and then add the blade. Cover with a lid, transfer
to an oven preheated to 140°C / Gas Mark 1 and
cook for 4 1/2 - 5 hours, until the meat is very tender
when pierced with a knife.
to cool a little, then remove the meat from the casserole
while still warm. Drain and wrap tightly in clingfilm
to form a cylinder. Place in the fridge overnight
to set the shape.
the sauce through a fine sieve.
blanch the spring onions in a large pan of boiling
salted water until limp.
immediately in cold water, then drain and set aside.
the nettles in a large pan of boiling salted water
for 30 - 45 seconds, then drain, refresh in cold water
and drain again. Mince or finely chop the nettles
and set aside, together with any liquid that comes
out of them.
the stock to boiling point in a small saucepan.
In another saucepan, heat the butter, add the shallots
and cook gently for 3 minutes, until softened but
the rice and cook for 3 - 4 minutes, until translucent.
the hot stock 100ml at a time, stirring constantly.
When each addition has been absorbed by the rice,
add another 100ml, until the last of the stock has
been used up - it should take 17 - 18 minutes in total.
5 minutes before the end, add the nettles and their
liquid, and the chopped spring onions.
risotto should be moist and al dente.
in the Mascarpone to give a creamy texture.
the risotto is too sloppy, cook for a little longer;
if it is too thick, add a little more chicken stock.
the beef has been in the fridge overnight, cut it
through the clingfilm into 6 or 8 pieces. Remove the
the blades on each side in a the remaining 50ml oil
and 25g butter until golden.
to a baking tray, pour over enough sauce to come halfway
up the meat and place in an oven preheated to 180°C
/ Gas Mark 4 to heat through and glaze the top, basting
every 5 minutes. The top should be shiny.
simmer the remaining sauce until reduced to a coating
consistency, then check the seasoning.
finish the spring onions, heat the butter in a frying
pan with 2 tablespoons of water, add the spring onions
and warm them through. Season to taste.
a mound of risotto to one side of each serving bowl
and arrange the spring onions on the other side.
lift out the braised blade and place on top of the
risotto, then spoon the sauce around.
6 - 8