KB has been away for work this week, so I've been left to fend for myself gastronomically (cue the world's smallest violin, please). My Mum is a teacher, in the last week of the schoolyear (think crazy busy, no time to stop and complete domestic tasks such as making herself a meal). It seemed sensible to team up, to ensure we both got a few good meals under our belts. So, Mum bought supplies and I turned chef for the week. This was the pick o' the week - nothing complicated, but bursting with fresh flavours (fennel, citrus, mint - I LOVE summer!!) and seasonal goodies. We used lamb, but beef or venison would also work really well. We had rump steak, but again - whatever you have will do, so long as it's going to be tender (so, for example, I probably wouldn't use a cut that is going to need slow cooking). This will serve 4. Buon Natale, it's almost Christmas!!
Warm pear salsa
1 pear, diced 1 cm
1/4 red onion, finely diced
2 x little packs raisins (about 25g)
1 1/2 tsp fennel seeds + ground coriander mix
1 1/2 tsp vinegar (I used cider)
2 tbsp water
300 g steaks (or however much will be sufficient for 4 people)
2 tbsp fennel seeds + ground coriander mix
salt and ground pepper
drizzle olive oil
1 cup chicken stock
3/4 cup couscous (the little stuff, not Israeli)
1/2 capsicum, diced
1/2 Lebanese cucumber (or third telegraph), diced
1/4 red onion, finely chopped
2 tbsp mint leaves, roughly chopped
zest and juice of 1 lemon
- Rub seasoning into steaks with a little oil, set aside to marinate - if you can do this several hours earlier, even better!
- Combine salsa ingredients in a small pot. Bring to simmer then turn down to low heat and cook for 10 minutes or so, until pears are soft.
- Prepare all veges for couscous.
- Bring chicken stock to the boil in medium pot. Stir in the couscous, cover and remove from heat. Leave for 5 minutes.
- While couscous is being left heat butter in fry pan (or on BBQ hotplate) and, when hot, add steaks. Cook for a couple of minutes on each side (for rare), or a little longer, depending on how you like your meat cooked. Remove from heat and set aside to rest for a few minutes.
- Fluff couscous with a form and add veges. Combine and spoon onto plates. Cut steaks into thick slices and place on top, topping the whole lot off with a couple of spoons of salsa.
NB: If you wanted a little more, I'd recommend frying up some in-season asparagus with this!