Beef, Mushroom and Parmesan Salad

Here is a recipe for a simply prepared dish that relies on the finest ingredients to get the best results. It is a salad that can be served warm or cold and will complement any summer picnic or barbecue.

  • 2 cups fresh, closed mushrooms
  • 100mL of extra virgin olive oil (Geoff recommends the Joseph Variety from South Australia)
  • 2 tablespoons of finely chopped fresh herbs of your choice (Geoff used continental parsley straight from the garden)
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • lemon juice to taste, freshly squeezed
  • a thick slice of sirloin or rump steak, about 150g
  • 50g fresh Italian parmesan cheese, shaved into thin strips (Geoff used Regiano parmesan)
  • fresh thyme to use as a brush

Season the beef with pepper and salt on both sides. This should be done just prior to cooking as the salt will draw all the moisture out of the beef.

Before frying the meat, oil the frying pan or grill by using a bunch of fresh thyme tied together and dipped in olive oil. The sprig of thyme not only adds a subtle flavour to the meat, but also prevents the bristles of a normal pastry brush melting when coming into contact with the hot grill or frying pan.

Place the meat on an extremely hot grill or frying pan and cook it on one side until about 60% done. Turn once and cook on the other side the remaining 40%. Once the steak is cooked remove it from the grill and let it rest in a warm place so that the juices can be reabsorbed into the meat, making it more tender and flavoursome.

Wipe the mushrooms, don’t wash them, otherwise they will go soggy. Cut off the stalks and slice the mushrooms thinly. Put all the mushrooms in a large salad bowl. Season with freshly ground pepper, sea salt, olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon juice. Gently toss the mushrooms to mix in the flavours without crushing the mushrooms. Chop the herbs (parsley) finely. Slice the steak once it has rested. Use a good sharp knife to cut thin slices.

To present the salad pile the mushrooms on a platter and sprinkle them with parsley. Place the sliced beef over the mushrooms then garnish with freshly shaved parmesan cheese.

Availability

Probably no one place will keep the beef, cheese and other ingredients required. The meat is available from butchers and supermarkets. The cheese, oil and other ingredients are available from good supermarkets or delicatessens. Alternatively try the following stockists who keep quality ingredient and are worth a visit.

NSW
The Essential Ingredient
4 Australia Street
Camperdown 2050
Phone: (02) 9550 5477

Simon Johnson Purveyor of Quality Foods
181 Harris Street
Pyrmont 2009
Phone: (02) 9552 2522
(Stocks Joseph Variety olive oils)

QLD
Gail’s Delicatessen
210 Given Terrace
Paddington 4064
Phone: (07) 3367 0398

SA
Providore-Lucias
66 Central Market
Adelaide 5000
Phone: (08) 8231 5977

VIC
The Vital Ingredient
206 Clarendon Street
South Melbourne 3205
Phone: (03) 9696 3511

WA
The Grocer
Chelsea Village
145 Stirling Highway
Nedlands 6009
Phone: (08) 9383 7733

Further information

The grill that Geoff used in this segment is made by the New Grill Company. It is a cast iron grill with dimensions of 550x250mm and costs $120. For more information contact one of the following stockists in your state.

NSW
Chef’s Warehouse
252 Riley Street
Surry Hills 2010
Phone: (02) 9211 4555

QLD
Executive Chef
37 Tribune Street
South Brisbane 4101
Phone: (07) 3844 4413

VIC
The Vital Ingredient
206 Clarendon Street
South Melbourne 3205
Phone: (03) 9696 3511

WA
Amano
12 Station Street
Cottesloe 6011
Phone: (08) 9384 0378

Mail-order
Contact Colin Selwood for mail order to country areas. Phone: (0416) 166 464.

Mushroom tips

Mushrooms are the fruiting bodies of a fungus and a good source of B group vitamins. They are delicious raw or cooked but for the best results Geoff Jansz has these tips: To get young mushrooms choose those that are closed. The older the mushroom the more likely they are to be open and flat.

Mushrooms are best when fresh. If possible, buy only what you need for a specific dish. If you do have to keep mushrooms store them in a paper bag in the refrigerator. In this way they will keep for several days. Do not store mushrooms in a plastic bag.

When preparing mushrooms for eating wipe them over but don’t wash them. Washing can lead to the mushrooms becoming soggy. There is also no need to peel a mushroom before it is sliced or cooked.

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