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Perfect Steak with Bearnaise Sauce & Root Vegetable Crisps

There really is nothing like a juicy rare steak with buttery béarnaise sauce. We thought we'd share our foolproof recipes and tips on how to cook a perfect steak and homemade béarnaise. And how about a side dish of homemade root vegetable crisps with rosemary and thyme smoked salt? YUM!

This dish is just pure happiness on a plate. Tender juicy steak, velvety smooth bearnaise and the wonderful texture and sweetness of the veggie crisps. Enjoy with a simple rocket salad. 

The Perfect Steak

Serves: 4

4 x 3cm thick rump steaks
15 ml oil
15 ml butter

Sprinkle the steaks liberally with freshly ground black pepper.

Heat a frying pan over high heat until very hot. Add the oil and butter.

As the butter starts to change colour, add the steaks.

Make sure that the pan remains hot enough to seal the steaks(don't overcrowd the pan). If the temperature drops quickly, rather cook the steaks two at a time.

Once the steaks are browned on both sides, reduce heat and cook over a lower heat so that the total cooking time is ± 5 minutes - this will give you a medium - rare steak. +- 7 minutes for medium (you will also see pink blood droplets rising to the surface of the meat – this is a sure sign that the steak is medium.)

Remove the steaks from the pan and place on a warm dish, sprinkle with seasoning of your choice (we used homemade rosemary and thyme smoked salt *) and cover loosely with foil. Allow to rest for 3 minutes before slicing.

The Perfect Béarnaise Sauce
Yields: 250 ml

250 g butter
30 ml tarragon or white wine vinegar
30 ml water + 15 ml water
30 ml Fresh tarragon, chopped or 10 ml freeze-dried tarragon
+- Juice of ½ lemon (or to taste)
cayenne pepper to taste

In a medium saucepan, heat the butter until it is completely melted. When it starts to foam and the milk solids rise to the surface, remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Then pour through a sieve or muslin cloth to remove the separated milk solids – leaving you with a clear, clarified butter*.

In a small saucepan, combine the vinegar, 30 ml of water and dried tarragon (if using dried tarragon) and reduce the mixture over a high heat until you have 15 ml remaining. Remove from the heat and add 15 ml of water.

Place this mixture in a heatproof bowl and egg the egg yolks. Whisk until the mixture is thickened and creamy. Place over a bain-marie of water and whisk in +- 15 ml *clarified butter at a time, making sure that each addition of butter is well incorporated before adding the next bit of butter.

When all the butter has been incorporated, season with lemon juice, salt and cayenne pepper. Add chopped fresh tarragon now (If using fresh tarragon).

Keep sauce warm over a shallow pan of warm water until ready to use. Although can be eaten at room temperature.

TIP: If the sauce starts to become too thick before all the butter is added or you desire a thinner sauce, whisk in a little hot water.

Perfect Root Vegetable Crisps with Rosemary and Thyme Smoked Salt
Serves: 4

2 large sweet potatoes, well washed
1 small butternut, peeled
4 large carrots, peeled
3 large beetroots, well washed
+- 1.5 L fresh cooking oil
Paper towel

Slice all the veggies thinly with a mandolin slicer. It may look like a lot, but when fried, it reduces to about a ¼ of the amount! 

Heat oil at a moderately high temperature. When hot enough, add the sliced sweet potato and fry until curled up and crispy then remove and place on paper towel to absorb excess oil.  Do the same with the butternut and carrot batches. Fry the beetroot last, as it takes longer and discolours the oil slightly.

Season immediately with rosemary and thyme salt*.

*Rosemary and Thyme Smoked Salt

Place the leaves of 2 sprigs rosemary and 3 sprigs thyme in a mortar and pestle together with 45 ml smoked Malden salt. Grind and bash together until fragrant and well combined.




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