The beauty of steak lies in two things: its taste and its simplicity. Like many things in life; you get what you pay for! So I’d always rather have steak less frequently, but of higher quality.
Here, I team it with something you wouldn’t necessarily associate with low-carb eating: suet dumplings! These are made with almonds instead of flour; so present no problems to the gluten-free-, ketogenic- or diabetic-diner. The garlic mushrooms and dressed beans are a personal homage to French classicism. One thing the French do really well is vegetables, and I take my hat off to them for this combo!
Start with the dumplings. These work on the classic ‘half fat to flour’ ratio. Take 6oz of ground almonds and 3oz of beef suet to make 4 medium-sized dumplings (midway between golf-ball and tennis-ball – does that equal hockey-ball??? No idea). Make sure you check the packet if you’ve bought your suet from a supermarket. Some suets contain large amounts of flour to stop the grains from sticking together. Mix together in a bowl, add chopped herbs, salt and pepper, plus a pinch of bicarbonate-of-soda. Slowly add cold water, dribble-by-dribble; until the mix clumps together. If you use a dinner-knife to mix the water in, then you’ll see far more easily when the mix is cohesive enough to form a dough. A spoon tends to ‘smear’ and ‘spread’. A knife mixes neatly.
Form the dough into balls then steam over water for 5 minutes in a pan with a heavy lid. There may be some disintegration into the water, but that’s only natural. Transfer the dumplings to the oven and bake for 15 minutes until crisp on the outside.
While these are in the oven, heat your skillet-pan to a good searing heat. Throw in a little butter, then add your seasoned steak; enjoying the sizzle as it hits the pan. Turn after a couple of minutes and re-season the upturned cooked-side.
Chop some mushrooms and add these to the pan. Melt in a good spoonful of garlic butter, then rub what is left on the spoon onto the surface of the steak. For this quantity of garlic-butter, think one small clove of crushed garlic, to one large table-spoon of butter. Much more garlic and it acquires a ‘burn’. Remove the steak from the pan to rest, and continue to cook the mushrooms.
In the water used to steam the dumplings, steam your beans for 2 minutes until they’re cooked, but still have their bite. Season, dress with vinaigrette, then shave fresh parmesan-cheese over the lot.
Take the dumplings out of the oven and serve next to the steak. Spoon out your mushrooms, and pour a little of the buttery pan-juices over the steak and dumplings. Dish up the beans, help yourself to a spoonful of mild Dijon mustard; then head straight to the table whilst the whole thing is still piping hot!
The simple pleasures in life are always the best!
Thanks for reading and bon ap!