Thursday, July 19, 2007

That's shallot!

BRAMMY puts on his other hat as PR guru tonight as he tries once again to flog a dead horse (ie attract some clientele to his favourite pub the Boar's Backside). It has reached my attention that the little entrepeneur has actually been charging a tidy wack for his services, and has been receiving free pints of old scroat as well.
Some rather naive publican has fallen for his spiel that he knows everything there is to know about newspapers and will fill local pages and radio airwaves with the news that the bar stewards in The Boar's speak Welsh as a first language.
To that end he has tried to sell WoS a story that our news editor Kempy has wisely decided to completely ignore. Not only that but he has sent letters out to all the leading lights in the Welsh political parties including First Minister Rhodri Morgan, Lib-Dems leader Mike German, Plaid Cymru's Ieuan Wyn Jones and Tory top dog Nick Bourne inviting them to tonight's launch.
Sadly for Wales' dilapidated equivalent of Alastair Campbell his pleas have fallen on deaf ears. For some unfathomable reason Doddery Rhodri has decided it might not be a good time to visit the local boozer just a few days after leaving hospital following heart surgery. He is also a bit busy at the mo, forming a coallition goverment with Ieuan Wyn. As for the other two, I'm sure they can find better things to do with their time than support Brammy's latest ill-fated attempt to boost his bank balance and beer credits.

Last night I ventured into the world of Anthony Bourdain again and attempted his version of Filet of Beef, sauce porto and roasted shallots. Without having any Port, however, I decided that Madeira would probably ably fill the void.
12 whole, peeled shallots plus one shallot, thinly sliced.
5 tablespoons of butter
cooking oil
A joint of beef cut into thick slices, or steaks.
pint of vegetable stock
three fluid ozs of madeira or port

Heat the oven, then turn the temperature to low. Put the whole shallots in a roasting tin, together with 2 tbsp of butter. Cover with foil and cook, monitoring and turning occasionally, for 45 mins. They should remain in shape but soften.
Season the cuts of beef, or steak, with salt and pepper.
Heat oil in a deep saucepan with a tablespoon of butter, let it foam and subside then sear the meat on all sides.
When it is brown remove from the pan and let stand
Transfer to a roasting pan later and cook for seven to 10 mins so that it is medium to medium rare (I left it in a bit too long on too high a heat, overcooking some of the beef)
Fry the shallots in the meat juices. then add flour and stir around and mix in. Then add the madeira and mix in with wooden spoon, scraping the sidesl of the pan. Reduce wine then add a decent amount of veggie stock, keeping some back in case the sauce thickens too much.
Bring to the boil and reduce by half. Add a knob of butter at the end and season.
Serve the meat surrounded by the shallots and cover with thick sauce. It's nice to have some veg, too, and I did baby glazed carrots. This is easy. Peel the carrots then cover with water and add a knob of butter and cook until most of the water has evaporated but the carrots havent burnt. Put in a serving dish with the remaining liquid and then spoon onto plate.

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