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.
- 600 g beef fillet centre cut
- 50 g sliced biltong
- 75 g 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
- 1/2 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.
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?).