Corned Beef with Parsley Sauce

Posted on Thursday, October 30th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

Corned Beef with Parsley SauceIt’s easy to forget how wonderful corned beef can be. This is a favourite recipe that makes a very popular family dinner. It’s worth making extra for sandwiches or corned beef hash the next day.

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  • 1 kg silverside corned beef
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 200 ml milk
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon English mustard
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • salt and pepper
Serves 4 (with leftovers)


To Cook

Put the corned beef, carrots, and all but one tablespoon of the chopped onion into a large pot, cover with water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer and skim off the foam that accumulates on the surface of the water. Cover and simmer for about 2½ hours, or until the corned beef is tender. Remove from the liquid, wrap in foil, and set aside. Reserve about 200ml of the cooking liquid. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Mince the reserved onion and add to the butter. Cook for about 1 minute, then stir in the flour and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute more. Add the reserved cooking liquid, milk, parsley, mustard, nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste, whisking the ingredients together until smooth. Cook for another 4–5 minutes, whisking constantly, until the sauce thickens. To serve, slice the corned beef against the grain and spoon the sauce over it. Delicious with buttered cabbage and floury boiled potatoes or colcannon.

Skirt Steak with Green Herb Sauce

Posted on Tuesday, October 28th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

Skirt Steak with Green herb sauceFat-phobes love this cut of steak as no trimming is required. Don’t skip the marinating stage, though — that’s what keeps the meat juicy and tender.

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  • a whole skirt steak
  • 8 sprigs rosemary
  • 8 cloves garlic, unpeeled and smashed
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or Irish rapeseed oil
  • flaky sea salt

for the herb sauce:

  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 75 ml white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 4 (in total) large handfuls of mint, coriander and flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 250 ml extra virgin olive or Irish rapeseed oil
  • 1 whole red chilli, deseeded and chopped finely
Serves 4-6


To Cook

Put the steak in a bowl with the rosemary, garlic, plenty of freshly ground black pepper and the oil. Cover with clingfilm and leave to marinate for at least a couple of hours, preferably overnight, turning a couple of times if possible. Take the steak out of the fridge about an hour before you are ready to cook. To make the herb sauce, blend together the garlic, vinegar, cumin and salt in a food processor. Add the herbs and blend to a purée. With the motor running, gradually add the oil until you have a loose sauce. Stir in the chopped chilli. You can make this ahead of time — just stir before serving. Cut the steak into two large pieces. Heat a large, ridged, cast iron pan — or two if you have them – on a high heat until you can barely hold your hand over it. Remove the steak from the marinade and season well with sea salt flakes. Cook for 2–3 minutes each side, without moving the meat, depending on how you like your steak cooked. Two and a half minutes is bang on for medium rare, so adjust accordingly, but any longer than 3 minutes will result in tough steak. Remove from the pan and leave to rest for 5–10 minutes, covered with foil. Repeat with the second piece of meat (if you are only using one ridged pan). Slice the meat across the grain and serve on a board, dressed with any juices that have run out during resting and a little of the sauce, with the rest of the sauce on the side. This is very good with the red slaw and sweet potato wedges.

Daube with Macaroni St Gall Gratin

Posted on Friday, October 24th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

Daube with Macaroni St Gall GratinAs with beef Bourguignon, there are as many variations on the theme of daube as there are cooks in Provence. You can cook a daube with chunks of meat — shin would be good — or in the piece, pot-roast style. Here we have used the so-called housekeeper’s cut, which is taken from the shoulder of the animal and is ideally suited to a long, slow braise in the oven while you get on with something else. The gratin is delicious.

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  • 1.5 kg housekeeper’s cut, rolled and tied
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or Irish rapeseed oil
  • 1 x 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 500 ml beef or chicken stock
  • 250 g macaroni
  • 150 g St Gall cheese, grated

for the marinade:

  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 100 ml brandy
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or Irish rapeseed oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 onions, halved and sliced
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 1 stick celery, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 orange, juice and zest, in strips
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 6 allspice berries
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
Serves 6

To Cook

Put the beef in a large bowl with all the marinade ingredients. Leave to marinate overnight. Preheat the oven to 140° C/fan 120° C/gas mark 1. Lift the marinated meat from the bowl and pat dry with kitchen paper. Dust it thoroughly with the flour. Heat the oil in a casserole and brown the meat all over, turning it a couple of times. Add the tomatoes and stock and stir well. Add the marinade with the vegetables. Bring to a simmer, cover and transfer to the oven. Cook slowly for about three hours, after which it will be beautifully tender. Remove the meat from the cooking liquid, cover it with foil and keep warm. Strain the liquid, skim the fat from the surface and boil to reduce by half. Meanwhile, cook the macaroni until just short of al dente. Add the macaroni and half the cheese to the cooking liquid and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top, turn the oven up to 180° C/fan 160° C/gas mark 4 and reheat for 10–15 minutes. Heat under the grill for a few minutes to brown the top of the gratin. Slice the meat and serve with the macaroni, making sure that everyone gets some of the crisp topping.

Ragù: Meat Sauce, Bolognese Style

Posted on Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

Ragu - meat sauce bolognese styleMarcella Hazan’s Classic Italian Cookbook is one of the greats, essential in any comprehensive library of cookbooks. Hazan is credited with having introduced authentic Italian cooking to America, and her recipes are always restrained and simple. Her ragù is a no-frills version – it contains no pork and no chicken livers, no garlic and no herbs. Hazan says there are three essentials to its success: the meat is to be sautéed only long enough to lose its raw colour – it should not brown as it will lose delicacy; the milk must be added before the tomatoes to keep the meat creamy and sweet tasting; and the sauce must cook at a long and very gentle simmer – three and a half hours at least, preferably five.

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  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 40 g butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped small
  • ½ large stick celery, chopped small
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped small
  • 350 g minced beef, not too lean, preferably chuck
  • sea salt
  • 240 ml dry white wine
  • 120 ml milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1 x 400 g tin chopped Italian tomatoes
Serves 6 as a modest primi piatti, or 3 as a substantial main course

To Cook

In a heavy, deep cast iron casserole dish, heat the oil and butter and add the onion. Sauté briefly over a medium heat until just translucent. Add the celery and carrot and cook gently for two minutes. Add the minced beef, crumbling it into the pot with a fork. Add one teaspoon of sea salt, stir, and cook only until the meat has lost its raw, red colour. Add the wine, turn the heat up to medium high and cook, stirring occasionally, until all the wine has evaporated. Turn the heat down to medium, add the milk and the nutmeg. Cook until the milk has evaporated, stirring frequently. Add the tomatoes and stir thoroughly. When the tomatoes have started to bubble, turn the heat down and cook the sauce at the laziest simmer, with just an occasional bubble. Cook, uncovered, for at least 3½–4 hours, stirring occasionally. Taste and correct for salt. Serve with about 50 g of spaghetti per person as a starter, or around 100 g per person as a main course.

Spanish Meatballs in a tomato Chorizo sauce

Posted on Monday, October 20th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

Spanish Meatballs in a Tomato SauceEveryone in our house loves meatballs especially Spanish meatballs! Baking the meatballs in the oven rather than frying them makes this recipe very straightforward and the chorizo elevates the dish from run of the mill to something a little more special with very little extra effort. This is a terrific multi-generational crowd-pleaser; the quantities can be easily doubled for a larger number.


  • 1 kg minced beef
  • 250 g minced free range pork
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • large handful of flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons smoked sweet paprika
  • 100 g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • fine sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil or Irish rapeseed oil

for the sauce:

  • 200 g cooking chorizo, stripped from its skin
  • and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 4 x 400 g tins chopped tomatoes
  • 125 ml red wine
  • 1 tablespoon caster sugar
  • large handful of flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
Serves 10


To Cook

Preheat the oven to 220° C/fan 200° C/gas mark 7. Combine the ingredients for the meatballs in a large bowl, using your hands to ensure that everything is evenly distributed. Form the mixture into balls about the size of a golf ball. You should have around 50 in total. Brush a large roasting tin with a little olive oil and place the meatballs on the tray, then drizzle with a little more olive oil. Bake in the in the oven for about half an hour, shaking the tin from time to time, until the meatballs are evenly browned. If they catch a little and start to caramelise, so much the better. Once the meatballs are in the oven, heat a frying pan over a medium heat and fry the chorizo until browned. The chorizo will release fat as it cooks, so there is no need to add any to the pan. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pan. Add the garlic and let it fry for a couple of minutes until golden. Add the tomatoes, wine and sugar. Season generously and bring to a simmer. Simmer, stirring from time to time, until it has thickened slightly, which will take about half an hour. Add the chorizo and the fat that it has released during cooking to the tomato sauce and stir. Add the parsley and check the seasoning. Add the cooked meatballs to the pan and coat themwith the sauce. Serve with rice, herbed couscous or cubed roast potatoes, and a green salad.

James Whelan Butchers: Chopaholic

Posted on Friday, October 17th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Foodie Articles | No Comments »

I find that when you mention pork chops there isn’t the instant appeal that other meat often elicits.  The problem is that the chop has generally been maligned for being too dry, dull and altogether boring.  I can understand this because I too, as a child, witnessed the abuses visited on the chop.  What started out as a relatively nice looking cut of raw meat ended up horribly pale and leathery and tasted the same.   For years there was a fear of raw pork and so everything had to be cooked to a crisp.   I feel very sorry for the pork chop because today it really has a lot of untapped potential.  The chop makes a lovely alternative to the chicken fillet.  It also has great autumnal value as it works well with the glut of apples and other fruits in season.

Things are very different in the pork world today.  The quality if Irish pork is really outstanding.  Producers are now breeding with taste and flavour as a priority and not just leanness as was the case in times past.  Because provenance and knowing where our pork comes from is very important to me I can tell you that pork we se;; is safe to eat medium or even medium rare if that’s how you like it.

There is really no way around it, you must buy well raised pork.  It’s best if it is natural pork that has been raised on a local farm.  You should also look for a nice layer of fat.  I know the tendency is for lean meat but there’s flavour in the fat and, as I said earlier, if it is a good quality chop you can even allow for a little bit of pink in the middle.

pork chops with sage and appleAt James Whelan Butchers we love pork loin chops and find there are plenty of great ways to cook them.  We do a very popular stuffed pork chop.  Using our own great stuffing that’s full of flavour, the moist mixture lends a helping hand to the overall texture of the meat once cooked and it also makes for a filling meal.  You can of course stuff the chops yourself by making a stuffing sandwich with two chops and baking.  Call by the shop some time to see the range of ready prepared pork chops on offer.

Even at home there are a myriad of things you can do with the chop.  Last week I found myself braising pork chops in a simple home made sherry gravy.  It couldn’t have been easier.  In a heavy cast iron pot with a little oil I seared the meat and then removed them to the side.  In the same pot I cooked some chopped onions and added a little crushed garlic, rosemary and thyme.  Then I put the chops back in on top of the onions and poured in a very generous amount of sherry, just about covering the chops.  I added some chicken stock and brought the whole thing to the boil and then put it in hot oven for about 20 minutes.  After about 10 minutes I added some blanched green beans.  Once the chops were cooked I removed them and kept them warm while I thickened the gravy a little and then served the lot over some lovely buttery mash.  I can’t tell you the amounts of anything that I used but it’s not an exact science at all.  It’s rustic and you could add many things to this dish that would just add to it.

You can keep it simple and just bake pork chops.  Take them out of the fridge and season well with salt and pepper.  I would let them sit out of the fridge for about half an hour, just to make sure that they come up to room temperature.  This will also help the chops absorb the seasoning.  Then on a piping hot pan sear them on both sides (about four minutes a side) and the finish them off in the oven for about 10 minutes.  (You can always give them a little prod with a meat thermometer if you’re not too sure).  Once cooked, take them out of the oven, pop a knob of butter onto each one and let them rest for at least five minutes before serving.

The problem with pork is that when it hits the heat it starts to tighten and it is the tightening of the fibres that squeezes out any of the juices within.  So if you cook the chop to well done all the way through on a hot relatively dry pan what do you expect?  Because of this chops Pork Chops with Mushrooms and Garlicreally lend themselves to slow cooked dishes or even slow cookers.  It may take a little organising early in the morning but you will be glad when you come home to those lovely aromas on a cold dark evening.  When slow cooking I would sear on a hot pan before putting in the pot and then add all the liquids and veg, turn on the slow cooker and at 8am in the morning you can be pretty sure there will be a great dinner ready to go come the evening.  I found a really good slow cook recipe on a US website and with a little tweaking I adapted it to suit me. The recipe called for a tin of mushroom soup whereas I used some homemade mushroom soup that I had left over from the weekend.  I simply seasoned my chops and seared them for one minute on each side and placed them in the slow cooker.  I poured in the mushroom soup (and thought that you could use chicken or tomato soup just as easily).  I added some chopped potatoes and herbs and let the whole thing cook for 8 hours in my slow cooker.  The chops were moist and melt in the mouth tender and the rich, pale mushroom gravy was a great compliment.

When you think of chops you have to use your imagination.  They really are tremendously versatile. Do something different with a chop this week and see if you to can’t unleash your inner chopaholic.

We hope you enjoyed reading this post by Pat Whelan of James Whelan Butchers. Pat is a 5th generation butcher, cook book author and the director of  James Whelan Butchers with shops in Clonmel, the Avoca Food Market Monkstown and Avoca Rathcoole. Sign up to our newsletter for more updates from James Whelan Butchers


Beef Carpaccio with Desmond Cheese

Posted on Thursday, October 16th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

Beef Carpaccio with Desmond CheeseA simple and very elegant dish. Excellent dry-aged fillet of beef served in this way is a real pleasure. Be sure to use very good olive oil — you will really notice the difference. Many hard cheeses will work here — and Parmesan or pecorino would be authentic — but if you are feeling patriotic, experiment with an Irish cheese.

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  • 400 g beef fillet
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • flaky sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bulb fennel, finely sliced
  • 50 g Desmond cheese, finely shaved
Serves 4


To Cook

Either ask your butcher to oblige, or cut the beef into very thin slices against the grain and place between two sheets of clingfilm. If you have a meat tenderiser, beat the meat gently until you have very thin slivers. Alternatively, use the pressure of a rolling pin to make the slices as thin as possible. Arrange the slices on a large platter. Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, sea salt and black pepper and drizzle over the meat. Leave to one side for five minutes to allow the dressing to flavour the meat. Scatter the fennel slices and rocket across the meat, and top with the shavings of cheese. Drizzle with some more olive oil.

Beef Wellington

Posted on Tuesday, October 14th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

beef wellingtonMy family loves this recipe and there’s something wonderfully retro about the notion of beef Wellington. It puts us in mind of formal dinners at Downton Abbey or seventies dinner parties with the hostess floating around in a kaftan. Named after the man who crushed Napoleon at Waterloo, the very notion of preparing beef Wellington casts fear into the hearts of the most competent of home cooks. Perhaps that’s why so many chefs like to cook it at home for their private celebrations, in a subtle display of one-upmanship. You’ll find more chefs eating beef     Wellington than turkey on Christmas Day, that’s for sure. But we’ll wager that even they don’t make their own puff pastry. Our version doesn’t include foie gras (it just seems de trop) and it isn’t that difficult. Really.

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  • 20 g dried porcini mushrooms
  • 100g butter
  • 4 shallots, finely chopped
  • 600 g chestnut mushrooms, chopped
  • leaves from 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 400 ml Madeira
  • 4 tablespoons double cream
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or Irish rapeseed oil
  • 1 kg centre-cut beef fillet
  • 500 g all-butter puff pastry
  • 1 egg, beaten
Serves 6


To Cook

Preheat the oven, and a baking sheet, to 200° C/fan 180° C/gas mark 6. Soak the porcini in 150 ml boiling water for 20 minutes, then squeeze out and chop finely, reserving the soaking water. Melt the butter in a frying pan over medium heat and cook the shallots until pale gold, then add the mushrooms, porcini and thyme and cook until softened. Pour in the Madeira, season, turn up the heat and cook until the wine has evaporated. Take off the heat and scoop the mixture into a bowl. Mix in the double cream, taste for seasoning, and set aside. This is your mushroom duxelle. Heat the oil in a pan over a high heat and, when it is smoking, add the fillet and sear briefly on all sides until crusted. Season well and allow to cool. Roll out the pastry to a rectangle big enough to envelop the meat. Brush the pastry all over with most of the beaten egg, and then spread with the duxelle mixture. Put the beef at one end and carefully roll it up in the pastry. Stand the pastry-enveloped beef seam side down, and then trim the edges and tuck in to seal the parcel, pressing the edges together. Brush with the remainder of the beaten egg. Put on to the hot baking sheet and cook for about 35–40 minutes, or until a meat thermometer reads 45° C for very rare or 60° C for medium and the pastry is golden. Set aside to rest for 5 minutes before serving.


James Whelan Butchers: It’s A Butcher’s Life for Me

Posted on Monday, October 13th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Foodie Articles | No Comments »

There’s a tremendous beauty in the English language. We, unlike some of our European neighbours, have been blessed with an abundant tongue based on rich, ancient foundations. We have an instrument of expression that when used correctly can work incredible magic. Words can make us fall in love, do things we don’t want to do, create mental pictures or even stir up emotions we didn’t even know existed. There is power in words and yet we are often lazy, assuming that some subjects don’t deserve a richer word currency. Sad to say, recent recruitment advertising that I have seen for butchers is a perfect example. It looks like there are openings for apprentice butchers in many parts of Ireland which is great news, including my own business, exposing the fact that there is not a lack of jobs in the industry, but a lack of skills. However looking at the distinctly dull and lifeless call to arms, I can see many approaching just because there’s a paying job at the end of it. I caution that a paying job is never a good driving factor for a life in this world.

While the word ‘passion’ is often bandied about and overused these days it should be fully applied to butchers. I want people with an ardent interest in the area to come forward to fill any positions I may have or take up any training programmes we create. I want those bordering on the obsessive because then and only then will we have a chance at creating a healthy legacy. On that note, I am often asked if “I minded taking over the family business”! It always amazes me that anyone would think I was obligated or forced in some way to follow in my father’s footsteps. I genuinely loved every part of the business. I had butchery in my blood and for me it was a natural step. I was simply fulfilling my purpose and calling and while I’m thankful that I have such a strong ancestral link to raising stock for food and this noble craft, I firmly believe that it would have been my perfect job had I been the very first in my line to become a butcher.

Many people miss the fundamental reasons someone might want to take up this trade. I often find myself standing at a fence in the dew drenched, quiet early mornings, marvelling at the wonder of the animals I rear and the link they provide between us and the land. While I take great care in raising them and enjoy their inherent, melancholic majesty, I am also starkly aware of their ultimate upcoming sacrifice. These gracious, primal mammals provide us with food that keeps us healthy and makes us strong. I fully acknowledge the responsibility of ensuring that we make the most of such selfless surrender. As a butcher it is up to me to find out everything I can about the animal and the nourishment it can provide. I am responsible for making sure that every part of the animal that is a source of nourishment can be used as such. It is up to me to know how to cook any cut of meat, nose to tail including the bones, and to have personal experience of that so I can pass it on – that is a calling, a purpose and so much more than just a job. It is in this kind of thinking that one finds the joy.

Besides the cerebral there is also the physical. Part of the work of a butcher is not pretty. It is bloody, heavy and serious work. That neatly tied, attractive little package or the dark red fillet of steak that makes eyes at you from behind the gleaming glass of a butcher’s counter was once part of a large and wieldy carcass that required a deft combination of skill and art to bring it to such an aesthetic end. I can recall many days in the slaughterhouse where I emerged after ridiculously long hours of carrying, carving and cutting spent and exhausted. I often imagined a crowd outside that steel door just waiting to celebrate and applaud my wondrous achievements of turning the gory and slightly macabre into things of beauty that people enjoyed bringing to their kitchens. Of course the brass band and the cheering crowds only existed in my head as few people picking up a Sunday roast truly appreciate where it has come from. It is worth remarking that we are particularly unaware of this in Ireland. In France you will notice that a skilled butcher or baker is something to be celebrated and indeed treasured by the community. In Ireland sometimes the job of butcher or baker don’t have the craft recognition they deserve. Hence the dull recruitment ads that include uninspiring sentences such as “Trimming excess fat off meat and finishing to customer specifications will be required”. Where is the art and the craft, the nourishment, the acknowledgement of the ability to butcher an animal and provide real nutritious food that promotes life? Where is the fun? Where is the joy?

We must also remember that many of our human rituals are based around and linked to food. The food providers in our lives are vital. Being a butcher is more than just a job. There has to be an appreciation of the intrinsic nature of the work and what you are really doing rather than the soul less single minded goal of a pay packet. This is the only way to happiness and a fulfilling career in any walk of life.

At James Whelan Butchers we do provide an 18 month programme with an accredited FETAC qualification on completion. We only create the very best butchers that will carry our signature of excellence into the industry. We want the passionate and enthusiastic so if you or someone you know is interested they can contact us via the website or

We hope you enjoyed reading this post by Pat Whelan of James Whelan Butchers. Pat is a 5th generation butcher, cook book author and the director of  James Whelan Butchers with shops in Clonmel, the Avoca Food Market Monkstown and Avoca Rathcoole. Sign up to our newsletter for more updates from James Whelan Butchers

James Whelan Butchers: Beef Teriyaki with Spring Onions

Posted on Friday, October 10th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

beef teriyaki with spring onions - Pat Whelan The Irish Beef BookThis Japanese dish is very easy to make and, in my experience, universally popular! Marinate ahead for a super-speedy supper.


  • 8 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons mirin
  • 4 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 800 g piece sirloin steak
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or Irish
  • rapeseed oil
  • bunch of spring onions
  • sushi rice
Serves 4

To Cook

Place the soy sauce, mirin, sugar, honey, sesame oil, ginger and garlic in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 5–10 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Pour the soy sauce mixture into a large, shallow dish and add the steak, turning a few times to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 3 hours. Drain the beef, reserving the marinade. Heat the rapeseed oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook the steak for about 3 minutes each side (for medium rare) or according to how you like it. Transfer the steak to a plate, cover loosely with foil and leave to rest for 5 minutes. Cook the spring onions in the frying pan and set to one side.
Add the reserved marinade to the pan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 2–3 minutes or until reduced slightly. Thinly slice the steak. Serve with sushi rice, prepared according to the instructions on the packet, and sliced spring onions, drizzled with the sauce.

James Whelan Butchers: Steak Tartare

Posted on Wednesday, October 8th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Beef Recipes | No Comments »

steak tartareSome people use fillet, others striploin. Sirloin works too. The meat you use must be of excellent quality; you have to have absolute trust in your butcher. It’s important to hand-chop the meat with your sharpest knife, and taste the mixture as you go along, tweaking until you have the balance just right. We prefer the raw egg mixed in rather than perched on top. Even if you think you couldn’t bring yourself to eat raw meat, you really should try this just once. You might just be converted.

Steak tartare – Printer Friendly Download


  • 2 organic egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 4 anchovy filets, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons tomato ketchup
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Tabasco sauce, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 50 ml extra virgin olive oil or Irish
  • rapeseed oil
  • 30 ml brandy
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 50 g capers, rinsed
  • 50 g cornichons, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 500 g striploin steak, finely chopped
  • 4 slices good white bread, toasted and quartered
Serves 4

To Cook

Place the egg yolks in a large stainless steel bowl and add the mustard and anchovies. Mix well, then add the ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco and pepper, and mix well again. Slowly whisk in the oil, then add the brandy and mix again. Fold in the shallot, capers,
cornichons and parsley. Add the chopped meat to the bowl and mix well. Divide the meat evenly among four chilled dinner plates, forming it into a disc on each plate. You can use a ring mould if you have one, but it’s not essential. Serve with the toasted bread. Skinny chips (see the recipe on page 000) are the classic accompaniment.

James Whelan Butchers: Roast Onions with Balsamic Vinegar

Posted on Monday, October 6th, 2014 by Pat Whelan in Side Dishes | No Comments »

onions with balsamic vinegarRoast onions with balsamic vinegar is a great side dish and goes great with steak.

Onions with balsamic vinegar – Printer Friendly Download


  • 8 red onions, peeled and halved
  • 100 ml extra virgin olive oil or Irish
  • rapeseed oil
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 12 sprigs thyme
  • flaky sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
Serves 4-6

To Cook

Preheat the oven to 190° C/fan 170° C/gas mark 5. Put the onions in a heatproof gratin dish or a small roasting tin in which they will fit snugly in a single layer. Drizzle over the oil and balsamic and add the thyme and some seasoning. Make sure the onions are well oiled and seasoned. Cook for 40 to 45 minutes, until tender and well browned.