Friday, March 12, 2010

Steak Frites : Mastering the cuts video 5. Raw Essentials

Here is the fifth of our daily release of the videos, shot by Brian Jones and co-produced by Dino Joannides Dino Joannides and Daniel Young, will form the backdrop of our “why do you love steak frites?” competition on twitter, hopefully inspiring your most poetic, passionate or playful responses. [HOW TO ENTER THE COMPETITION].

The Onglet is a family favourite it has a massive flavour kick when properly cooked. To some the cut looks unattractive when removed from the carcass, a good knife can quickly transform it into a real beauty. Watching Dermot and Darragh O'Shea preparing it is like poetry in motion. Onglet is two muscles divided by tough connective tissue, which must be removed, and is taken from the diaphragm of the animal. Because of it's location it has a slight gamey, offally flavour not present in any of the other loin cuts. In terms of ageing this cut does not require or benefit much from more than 21 to 28 days.

Fillet is the most tender steak of all, but it is not necessarily the one with the most flavour. It is sought after for its delicate structure and lack of fat but ironically these are the characteristics that can make it rather bland when compared to the other great beef cuts like Onglet, Rib eye and Rump.

Fillet is cut from the inside of the beef loin, it does very little work and is therefore very tender. It can be improve when dry-aged and cut on the bone. We age our Irish and Scottish Black Angus Grass Fed and Barley Finished Fillet for around 21- 28 days but even at 15 days it can produce superb results when cooked and served correctly.

Fillet doesn't benefit from long ageing. If left too long in a vacuum it can develop a metallic taste as the enzymes over work. Too long hanging on the bone and it will dry out, losing some of it's moisture and tenderness .

The Rib Eye on the bone or Cowboy Steak as Americans call it and Côte de Boeuf as it's known in France is normally cut for two to share so perfect for lovers and good friends.In fact I know some couples who call it the kiss and make up steak. It is basically a thick rib eye with the bone attached. The bone always enhances a steak and this cut presents beautifully and theatrically when carved, and served at the table either in a restaurant or at home . This is one of the cuts that does benefit from aging at O'Shea's it is aged for 45 - 55 days. A well aged and marbled Côte de Boeuf should not need a sauce and is perfect with good Mustard or Bearnaise as a condiment.

In the video below Henry Harris Chef Patron of Racine and Darragh O'Shea of O'Shea's Knightsbridge discuss the raw essentials of Onglet , Fillet and Côte de Boeuf.