Yesterday was the hottest day so far this year and thankfully I got the bus into Nottingham early to hit the East Midlands Regional Farmers Market ( held every third Fri/Sat of the month in Nottingham Market Square) for some tasty BBQ treats
What first caught my eye was some Lincolnshire Red Steaks from the Thorpe Latimer stall and their herd has been at the farm since 1942 and I have enjoyed their beef before , buying steaks reminded me of the Waitrose Heston Blumenthal Tagliata recipe .
Tagliata is an Italian dish where the steak is cut into thin slices and drizzled with dressing and mixed with salad. I decided on an English spring tagliata using the best of local seasonal produce watercress and new potatoes and asparagus.
Although every week seems to be devoted to some food, this week is designated National Watercress Week . Personally have been craving watercress since my favourite watercress picking spot was massacred by the local council maintaining the canal towpath .
So I needed to pick up some new season watercress in the greencrocers, this time of year the watercress is very young with tendrils rather than stalks , the grocers english new potatoes were expensive (Note the supermarket 99p deals come from Chad) but I only needed a few.
Fat English Asparagus stalks came from Woodlands Farm , currently being showered with awards for their organic farming, the produce all looked so lovely that have been tempted to try out their vege-boxes.
With the dressing ( olive oil, garlic, white wine vinegar , mustard , lemon juice salt and pepper) soaking on the boiled new potatoes it was simply a question of letting the steaks cook and then rest while the asparagus grilled . With a nod to the Italian origins we drank a Montepulciano . The salad took just a few seconds to put on the plate and the remainder the steak.
The dish was delicious meat well done on the outside yet rare inside a , charred asparagus with sweet woodiness , a taste you only get from the BBQ . Slicing the steak meant it soaked up the dressing as had the soft new potatoes, the watercress was just peppery and crunchy enough though beginning to wilt under the acid dressing.
As summer approaches I can imagine do this more with peppers or even fruits like peaches BBQ as the steaks rests.
English Spring Tagliata with BBQ Beef Steak, Watercress , Asparagus and New Potatoes
Serves two v.greedy people
2 small sirloin steaks ( should be at least half a inch thick)
1 large bunch of watercress
Handful of new potatoes
6 asparagus spears
10 tbsp of olive oil
5 tbsp of white white vinegar
1 heaped tbsp of dijon mustard
Juice of half a lemon
1 garlic clove grated
Salt and Pepper to season
- Stoke up the BBQ.
- Mix together the dressing ingredients.
- Boil the new potatoes whole, cut in half and while warm place in the dressing.
- Season the steaks with salt and pepper on both sides.
- BBQ the steaks , once one side is well done turn and cook the other side for just few minutes.
- Leave the steaks to rest , and BBQ the asparagus don’t worry if they char slightly thick stems can take some heat.
- Toss the asparagus and watercress with the potatoes in the dressing,
- Remove the salad from the dressing and arrange on a plate
- Slice the steak and place on top of the salad , pour over the remaining dressing
It is definitely the first night it has been comfortable eating outside and since we are due a scorcher of a weekend I am very glad that as I left the blistering midday heat of the market I picked up beef mince from both Thorpe Latimer famous for their Lincoln Red and Blackbrook Longhorn Beef . Saturday night is a burger taste test inspired by the in-market brisk trade in cooked burgers