Reinterpreting meat and two veg
In this recipe, I will be reinterpreting the classic meat and two veg. It's a fairly straightforward and loose definition of a meal, so I'll take advantage of that by using some different ingredients that are not only super-tasty but very economical too. Anchovy and meat may seem like a strange combination, but it's been done for years – the saltiness of the fish cutting the richness of the meat beautifully.
Makes 4 starter-sized portions
1 ox tongue
1 onion, peeled and halved
1 carrot, peeled and halved
2 sticks celery
1 bay leaf
1 sprig thyme
8 brown anchovy fillets
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon caperberries
Dijon mustard 100ml olive oil
10 radishes, thinly sliced
1 handful freshly shelled peas
Splash olive oil
Handful parsley leaves
Ox tongue should be readily available at your local butcher. If not, ask him to order you one in.
To cook the ox tongue, first give it a really good wash in cold water and a scrub with a clean brush or scourer. Cover with cold water and leave in the fridge for a few hours.
Throw away the water and place the meat in a pan big enough to contain it. Cover with cold water and, over a medium heat, bring to the boil, skimming any foam or impurities that rise to the top.
Throw away that water, cover with water again and repeat, but when it comes to the boil this time, add all the other ingredients. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to cook for at least three hours until it feels soft when pressed with the back of a spoon.
When ready, allow to cool in the stock.
When cool enough to handle, peel away the thin skin from all over the tongue, and cut lengthways into 1cm-thick slices. If the tongue is particularly long, halve it first to make slicing more manageable. Set aside and discard the vegetables.
For the sauce, use a blender and blitz the egg yolk with the anchovies, caperberries and mustard. Slowly add the olive oil until all emulsified.
When ready to serve, heat a griddle pan and lightly oil and season the slices of tongue. Grill for two to three minutes on both sides and place on a plate. Dress the radishes and peas with a little olive oil and sea salt and add the parsley leaves. Serve two slices per person on each plate, scattering the radish and pea mix around the tongue and adding a good spoon of the anchovy sauce on the side.
More in this series
Reinventing shepherd's pie
Redoing jellied eels
Remaking tea and biscuits