Go green with St Patrick and pan-roasted Irish beef

Celebrating St Patrick's Day in Trafalgar Square 2014
Celebrating St Patrick’s Day in Trafalgar Square 2014

Thinking of travelling to Ireland, the Emerald Isle this year, but maybe not before St Patrick’s Day on Sunday 13th March? Then head to Trafalgar Square in London where the annual Bord Bia St Patrick’s Day Irish food market will be feeding around 70,000 foodies, travellers and Ireland-fans. This year, live food demos will be taking place and plenty of Irish-inspired street food will be on offer. Entry is free and the event will run from noon – 6pm.

But while you’re waiting for the big day, create yourself to the delicious Irish beef with butternut squash and much more.

PAN ROASTED IRISH BEEF WITH BUTTERNUT SQUASH, GIROLLES AND TREVISO

Pan roasted loin of Irish beef
Pan roasted loin of Irish beef

Recipe by Andy McLeish, Executive Chef at Chapter One, Orpington, Kent

Andy McLeish cooks with confidence and aplomb, creating innovative, often robust dishes that do not rely on overtly fancy touches or tricks to impress. Seasonality and provenance are the key pillars of his cooking style.

Andy McLeish hard at work
Andy McLeish hard at work

A beautiful and earthy dish, the natural sweetness of the butternut squash is a wonderful balance for the girolle mushrooms in Andy McLeish’s beef dish. Lightly wilting the Treviso lettuce may sound unusual, but it is a great way to get the most of its mild flavour.
With its fine marbling and great flavour, grass-fed Irish beef is the choice of leading chefs around the world, who seek it out for their menus.

Due to abundant rainfall and mild seasons, Ireland has the longest grass growing season in Europe – perfect for its cattle, which graze outside almost year-round.

As they say in Ireland: ‘the flavour shows where the best grass grows’.

Cooking Time: 1 hour
Serves: 4

Ingredients

800g Irish beef loin (approximately 200g per person)
1 butternut squash, peeled, halved and deseeded
200g girolles mushrooms, washed
50ml chicken stock
1 Treviso lettuce, cut into 12 leaves
1 lemon
1 tbsp parsley, chopped
Rock salt
Pepper
Butter
Olive oil

Method

Divide the butternut squash into 12 thick, equal pieces, keeping the trimmings for the butternut squash purée.

To make the purée, add the butternut trimmings to a pan with a little butter and cook on a low to medium heat, without letting the squash colour. When it has softened, place the squash in a blender, blitzing until smooth.

Add a small amount of butter and oil into a large pan on medium heat. Season the beef with salt and pepper before placing it in the pan. Turn the meat continuously so that it is coloured on all sides, for about 4-5 minutes. Ensure that the meat does not overcook, as it will become dry. It should be coloured on the outside but still rare on the inside. Leave to rest in a warm place when cooked until ready to serve.

Add some more oil and the butternut squash to the same pan. Colour the chunks of butternut squash, then lower the heat a little and add the chicken stock. Once the squash is nearly soft, add the girolles and turn up the heat.

Cook for a minute, tossing the pan a couple times. Add the Treviso leaves and cook for another minute or until the leaves have become wilted and limp.

To finish add a squeeze of lemon, a little butter, the chopped parsley and season with salt and pepper.

To serve, slice the beef into eight equal pieces and plate with the butternut squash, girolles and Treviso leaves. Carefully dot the butternut squash purée around the plate, then add a little of the cooking juice and some rock salt.

Serve immediately.

(Recipe courtesy of http://www.greatbritishchefs.com. For more inspiring Irish beef recipes, go to http://www.irishbeef.co.uk)

Bruce McMichael

I am freelance journalist and published author focusing on food and drink; business startups and enterprise; culture and travel. I have also written about the global upstream oil and gas industry, shipping and current affairs. Based in London, I travel widely, particularly across western Europe. I have chaired many conferences and meetings, spoken at conferences and events and often appear on radio and TV talking most about food, the business of food and being an entrepreneur.

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