(Picture above: Chantilly’s on the Bay – Vanuatu. The source of this week’s fabulous recipe.)
I know it has been a couple of weeks since I have written – I have been off enjoying a lovely holiday in Vanuatu. Scuba diving, climbing volcanoes, game fishing and kayaking. This was our first trip to Vanuatu and I must say it exceeded expectations. I was thinking of the you while I was away and did do a bit of research which involved indulging in some delicious cuisine.
Vanuatu is a fascinating country rich in culture and history which have both influenced the cooking. Until 1982 Vanuatu was under the rule of a Condominium government which saw two sets of laws, police forces, health systems and even driving rules! You were either subject to the French system or the English system, not surprisingly it was often referred to as the pandemonium government.
Fortunately for us, post independence they have kept some good things from each party and when it comes to food it is the French influence that reins supreme. Where else in the world can I walk off a dirt street into a French restaurant and be served the best souffle I have tasted? Don’t worry ladies wine is readily available and you can find varieties from Australia, New Zealand and France.
This week I have brought to you a wonderful beef dish which I sourced from one of Port Villa’s top restaurants, Chantilly’s on the Bay, which incorporates two of my favourite things meat and wine!
Hope you enjoy!
Eye Fillet of Beef with Pomme de Terre Salardaise and Red Wine Jus
Ingredients & Method:
For the beef
4 x 220g eye fillet steaks
Olive oil, salt and pepper to season
1 table spoon butter
Take the fillet steaks out of the fridge an hour before they are required to let them come to room temperature. Rub the fillets with a little olive oil, season the fillet with a coat of cracked peppercorns. Heat olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the beef fillets, then add a tablespoon of butter. Turn up the heat minute to sear the steaks, then lower again and cook about 3 – 4 minutes either side. Once both sides are down, brown the edges in the same way.
For the Red Wine Jus
500ml red wine
100 ml port
3 garlic cloves, roughly crushed
4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
500ml beef stock
Place red wine, port, thyme, garlic, bay leaf and peppercorns into a medium sized heavy based saucepan and bring to the boil over a high heat Boil vigourously for about 10 – 15 minutes or until much reduced.
Add the beef stock, reduce the heat and simmer for 8 – 10 minutes. Pass through a fine sieve.
For Pomme de Terre Salardaise (Roasted Duck Fat Potatoes)
Place even sized pieces of potato into a roasting tray and sprinkle generously with fresh thyme, salt and black pepper. Pour over 4 tablespoons of melted duck fat, and coat the potatoes with it. Then roast until golden and crisp.