I know there are no photography awards on its way to me for this one. I also know it isn’t much to look at on the plate, there are however some things worth mentioning, aside from the watery mash and the burnt carrots. This blog is my food journey after all and that means my failures as well as my successes.
I’ll keep this quick, there were two great parts to this meal. The first was the honey glazed carrots. I have never had chantenay carrots before and they were super sweet and super tasty. They honey caramelised and made them sticky and even sweeter. Unfortuanatley i cooked them a bit too long and they came out a little shrivelled and burnt around the edges. They kept their flavour though and if I had the choice I would always eat my carrots like this. The second part was the stuffing for the pork fillet. It was only sausage meat, apricots and pecan nuts but they complemented each other so well. The mash was just broccoli and potato mashed together with a little butter and seasoning. It was OK but when I started mashing it together the broccoli released water like a squeezed sponge. I was left with what i would call a potato puddle.
All in all this was ok, it had great potential and I’m sure on a better day it would be a really nice meal.
So simple yet so amazing. I managed to cook the steak perfectly rare this time (it helped the steaks were the same size and shape as each other) The broccoli was just drizzled in oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper then cooked in the oven until the edges turned crispy. The potatoes were seasoned sprinkled with chopped rosemary and tossed in olive oil the cooked in the oven as well.
Growing up you would always find steak and peppercorn sauce in restaurants. I don’t see it much any more which is a shame because if there is any better flavour that goes with steak better than pepper I have yet to find it. I have cooked peppercorn sauce from a sachet before using milk or water to turn the powder into a sauce. I wish I had known how easy it was to make it from scratch. Soften your finally chopped shallots in olive oil, add the crushed peppercorn and fry for a minute add the beef stock and some water and leave to reduce by half. Take it off the heat and stir in Creme fresh. You can add a little butter here if you want.
I can easily say this meal would be in my all time top 5. The vegetable is interchangeable it could be green beans, cabbage or peas. But, steak, potatoes and sauce there are very few combinations that would even come close.
Pan fried gnocchi, crunchy broccoli, earthy mushrooms, parsley and Parmesan. Simple, easy, amazing.
We were given another opportunity to pan fry gnocchi. This time we nailed it. There was a slight crispness to the outside with a warm almost fluffy inside. There were few ingredients to this dish but all the ingredients were fresh, full of flavour and combined perfectly. There is an ongoing debate about fresh and frozen vegetables. Some say fresh is better because, well.. its fresh others say that frozen is fresher as it is frozen quickly which locks in all the nutrients and the fresh stuff is already days old by the time it hits the shelves, let alone your plate. Well, personally I think fresh tastes so much nicer, something is lost in the freezing or thawing process for me. And if you have a good market near you or better still grow your own then there really is no question.
Let’s talk fungus, chestnut mushrooms and the common mushroom or button mushroom are actually the same just a different strain. Although broccoli and Kale are different strains of the same thing and we all know how different they are. When the chestnut mushroom matures it grows into what we know as the portobello mushroom. I can only assume the button mushroom is never allowed to mature as we eat so many of them. The chestnut has a stronger flavour than the button, much richer and earthier. It’s the equivalent between farmed meat and game meat.
This recipe used chestnut mushrooms thankfully as I think the humble button would have been lost. A plants worth of parsley really brings out the flavours of the other ingredients and the Parmesan does what only Parmesan can.