Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Grilled Fillet Steak with the Creamiest White Beans and Leeks

I first saw this Jamie Oliver recipe on Thursday Night Smackdown, a blog which I absolutely love, it makes me laugh out loud and the photography and food is delicious. This then led me to get the book out of the library and give the recipe a whirl. I am trying not to buy too many cookbooks and also trying to save money for the big move whenever that might happen! I work in a Public Library so I have really good access to books, plus its free to request books from other libraries in the Borough, it just never occurred to me to take cookbooks our before!

I usually find Jamie Oliver recipes a bit taxing, too many ingrdients or just too much effort but I have to say that this recipe worked really well, the flavour and texture of the beef worked really well with the creamy beans and leeks. However, do not substitute double cream for the creme fraiche! I did, and it made the beans and leeks too sweet, I think the creme fraiche would have given it a slightly sharper edge and cut through some of sweetness of the leeks.

I also don't like frying things in olive oil, as it seems to expensive to me to throw away on frying something when vegetable oil, rapeseed oil or sunflower oil will do just as well, and my sister says that frying things in olive oil is worse for you than frying them in butter, some chemical reaction or something, and she's the one with the chemistry degree!

Jamie's Grilled Fillet Steak with the Creamiest White Beans and Leeks (adapted from Cook with Jamie)
(Serves 4)

4 leeks washed, trimmed and finely sliced
a small bunch of fresh thyme, leaves picked
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
olive oil
a knob of butter
a wineglass of white wine
500g tinned or jarred butter beans, drained and rinsed
a small handful of parsley leaves, finely chopped
1 tbsp creme fraiche
extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
4 x 200g fillet steaks 2.5-4cm thick
1 lemon

Sweat the leeks, thyme and garlic with a splash of olive oil and butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan on a low heat for 20 mins until they are soft and sweet. Turn up the heat and add the white wine. Let the wine come to the boil, then add the beans and splash of water, so that the beans are almost covered. Allow to simmer gently for 5-10 mins until the beans are creamy. Add the parsley, creme fraiche and a glug of olive oil, season.

Heat a griddle/frying pan until white-hot, season the steaks and pat with olive oil. Grill the steaks for 2-3 mins on each side for medium-rare. Remove from the pan and onto a dish and rest for 5 mins. Squeeze over some lemon juice and drizzle over some olive oil. Carve the steaks into thick slices. Divide the creamy beans between the plates and place the steak on top, drizzling over some of the resting juices.

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