When I received the list of ingredients for my final Mystery box challenge from Woolworths for their Masterchef hub on their website, I didn’t know what to make. For approximately 4 days I read through it, continuously thinking I must’ve missed something. It was the most bizarre combination of ingredients and I was flabbergasted. What threw me was the biltong, star anise, plums and egg. Have a look below at what I was faced with.
Image courtesy of Woolworths
(Not included in the photo are the eggs and Parmesan)
I initially thought of making beef carpaccio with a plum reduction but I had no idea what to do with the egg and the biltong. I then decided to stuff the fillet with a mixture of biltong and carpaccio and cooked it with lots of butter until it was meltingly tender. I served the fillet on top of a spiced plum compote and topped with a fried egg, almost like a fancy pants steak & egg. Throughout the cooking process, I was worried about what this would taste like in the end and I was pleasantly surprised. The egg with it’s oozing yellow yolk added a creaminess to the steak while the plum compote added just the right amount of sweet tangyness to cut through all the richness. A strange, but delicious dish which will definitely impress the socks off your guests.
- 600g beef fillet, centre cut
- 50g sliced biltong
- 75g parmesan, cubed5 caper berries, stems removed
- 2 shallots, peeled
- 1 t coriander seeds, toasted
- 1 t fresh thyme
- 1 tn fresh rosemary leaves
- 1 t salt
- ½ t black pepper
- 3 T butter
- 2 T olive oil
- 4 large plums, stones removed and cubed
- 1 star anise
- 3 T brown sugar
- 2 T Balsamic vinegar
- salt to taste
- 4 free-range eggs, softly poached/boiled
- Butterfly the fillet, ensuring not to slice all the way through.
- Place the biltong, parmesan, caper berries and shallots in the bowl of a food processor and blend until finely chopped and well mixed.
- Stuff the mixture into the cavity of the fillet of beef then tie and secure with string.
- Combine the coriander seeds, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper in a mortar and bash until finely crushed.
- Sprinkle the mixture on a wooden board and roll the fillet in the spices, ensuring you cover the beef well.
- Melt the butter and olive oil in a large frying pan and add the fillet.
- Cook the fillet, turning regularly and spooning over the butter for 7-10 minutes or until cooked to your liking.
- Allow to rest for 10 minutes, covered with foil.
- To make the compote, combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and allow to come up to a boil.
- Simmer for 5-7 minutes (adding a little water if necessary) until the plums are just cooked and a sticky sauce has formed.
- To serve, spoon some of the compote onto serving plates, slice the beef and place a slice on top of the compote and finish with a soft poached/boiled egg.
- Serve immediately.
The Woolworths Masterchef Hub is a hive of activity with loads of recipes and fun ideas and if you think you can make a better dish with the ingredients I was given, hop on over because you stand a chance of winning one of fourteen R1000 Woolworths gift cards or the grand prize of a R10 000 gift card (do you think it’s OK if I enter?).