Few things are as beautiful as a magnificent piece of beef sliced paper thin and dressed with some simple but delicious ingredients. This dish is so simple to prepare but looks and tastes amazing. And guess what - you don't have to have the knife skills of a sashimi chef to create those beef slices. Read on for my secret to paper-thin beef - no ninja slicing required!
This dish really is super simple and everything can be prepared in advance - the beef can be prepared the day before (just seal tightly in baking paper or cling wrap and refrigerate) and the dressing will keep for weeks in the fridge. All you need to do is assemble your lovely dish just before serving. Perfect for entertaining or just enjoying in the pleasure of your own delicious company :)
Energies in this dish: courage, faith, endurance, protection, purification and peace
Watch me show you how to make this lovely dish in my recipe video.
Beautiful beef carpaccio with mustard dressing
Serves 6 people
- 400g beef - sirloin steak, porterhouse steak or eye fillet steak work well. You want a piece of meat with some areas that are clear of too much fat or sinew. You can see this by looking into the packet
- 20g parmesan cheese (you can really use any hard cheese you like here, pecorino romano is delicious, and I love using a salty Greek sheeps' milk cheese called kefalograveria when I have it)
- Marigold petals, or other edible flowers or petals, to garnish (entirely optional)
- 3 tablespoons olive oil (peace)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (purification)
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard (courage, faith and endurance)
- 1 small garlic clove, crushed (protection)
- Pinch of salt
- Pinch of ground black pepper
For the mustard dressing, combine all ingredients in a small jar and shake vigorously until combined (or whisk together in a bowl). Set aside until needed. This dressing keeps for weeks in the fridge and the flavours keep developing. You'll need to bring it to room temperature before assembling your beef.
Trim any fat and sinew off your beef. It doesn't have to be sinew-free, but get rid of any large bits that wouldn't be nice to eat.
Slice your beef into rough slices approximately 1cm thick. Lay a sheet of greaseproof paper on your bench, place a piece of beef on it, cover with another sheet of paper, and give it a couple of whacks with a rolling pin. Be firm but not cruel. Once it's thinned out a bit, use the rolling pin to roll it out to your desired thinness. I do mine to about 2mm thick. Don't worry if you roll the first couple of pieces too thinly and they fall apart when you try to get them off the paper - keep going and you'll get the hang of it.
Peel the beef off the greaseproof paper. If you are serving your carpaccio straight away, head to step 5. If not, transfer the lovely thin pieces of beef onto some clingwrap, laying them out side by side in a single layer. When there's no more room, cover with another piece of clingwrap and give it a roll over the top with your rolling pin to get any air out. Store in the fridge until needed. Repeat until all the remaining beef is wrapped up.
To serve, lay your beef slices out on your serving dish. I just try to let mine fall naturally into nice folds, but you can lay them any way you want. Spoon over the mustard dressing. Use as much or as little as you feel like.
Use a microplane to grate over the cheese. If you don't have a microplane, grate it finely and then scatter over using your hands. Sprinkle over the marigold petals, if using, and serve
I have tried the beef rolling method with clingwrap, and on a board with no paper/wrap at all. In my opinion the greaseproof paper is by far the best method. Clingwrap sticks to the beef and stops it from rolling out nicely, and using the rolling pin direct on the meat mashes it up too much.