I have been spending a lot more time in the kitchen lately… and loving it.  I have learnt so much.  From someone scared to have a go, I am now experimenting and having fun combining big flavours and textures.

We took advantage of a special at Super Butcher recently and purchased a heap of meat in bulk including some eye fillet.  Dinner last night was a dish made up of many of my favourite flavours…

Eye Fillet topped with caramelised onion on a potato rosti, drizzled with a red wine jus accompanied by roasted garlic!  This is the first time I have prepped and cooked all these ingredients myself, it wasn’t that difficult, just approach it step-by-step and it all works.  Delicious.

I made my  own beef stock with 2kg beef bones, 4 carrots, 2 onions, half a celery, bay leaves, pepper.  Ingredients were dry roasted for 30 minutes before submerging under water in large  stock pot and simmering gently for 14 hours.  Early next morning, after removing the solids, I added a bottle of shiraz then reduced the stock by boiling on a high heat and skimming off the impurities.  The jus volume reduced dramatically and intensified in flavour.  A little arrowroot added at the end to thicken and the jus was complete.

My caramelised onions; use 4 large red onions chopped in semi circles.  Cook slowly in a heavy pan in a splash of olive oil, add  a good splash of balsamic vinegar and a generous sprinkle of sugar.  Cook slowly, you don’t want to brown the onions.  Taste.  I like lots of sugar on the onions.  Cook for at least 2.5 hours, they will reduce in volume becoming jammy.

My roast garlic is just deliciously simple.  Cut a whole garlic head in half carefully so as not to break it, add a little salt, olive oil wrap in foil, cook in oven for 1.5 – 2 hours at 120 degrees C.  Yum.

My potato rosti’s combine 4 grated potatoes, 1 finely chopped onion, 1 egg, a little flour to thicken, salt and pepper.  Squeeze the grated potato to remove some of the starch liquid.  Mix with your hands, much easier than with a spoon, yes even I am now getting my hands dirty.  Shallow fry in olive oil on a high heat till brown.  Keep warm in oven.

Put your serving plates in the oven as well (on a low heat) to help keep your meal warm.  Serving onto a cold plate would be like jumping in a cold pool in winter!

Now the eye fillet, sear each side in a hot pan for 3 minutes a side, finish in oven at 200 degess C for 8 minutes, remove from oven, top with foil and allow to rest for 5 minutes.  This cooks steak as medium, happy days!

Want something green, steam some broccoli or spinach and add as a side.

Plate up and serve.  Don’t forget to enjoy with a glass of Shiraz!

Tell me how this works for you, look forward to your comments!