Nick Nairn is Scotland’s best-known chef and one of the country’s most popular figures. He is in high demand as chef, consultant and personality and is a prominent spokesperson on diet, healthy eating and Scottish produce. In 2007 Stirling University recognised this and awarded him an honorary decorate for his outstanding contribution to Scottish cuisine and work in promoting healthy eating.
With a host of cookery books, an award for his outstanding contribution to Scottish cuisine and experience in preparing exquisite meals, including the Queens 80th birthday dinner, Nick has created a delicious recipe that compliments Grant’s beautifully.
He says, : “I developed the recipe ‘Callops of beef medallions with Grant’s Ale Cask Reserve Whisky and mushroom cream, served with wilted spinach and crushed tatties’ for a deeper, richer experience. I feel the Grant’s house style works particularly well with food, whether it’s the complex, clean and fruity flavour of the Grant’s Whisky or the creamy, malty and honeyed taste of the Grant’s Ale Cask Reserve, both are essential ingredients to create a really great tasting recipe. This recipe has a winning combination of premium Scottish beef, wild mushroom and premium Scotch Whisky for the perfect blend of flavours. As a passionate Scot, I’m delighted with the way whisky is being used now to change people’s appreciation towards whisky with food and the fantastic pairing possibilities it has.”
‘Callops of beef medallions with Grant’s Ale Cask Reserve whisky and mushroom
cream, served with wilted spinach and crushed tatties’
3 tablespoons black peppercorns
4 fillet steaks, weighing about 175g each
4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Freshly ground sea and freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
200g fresh cep mushrooms, thickly sliced
50ml Grant’s Ale Cask Reserve Whisky
50ml beef stock
50ml double cream
For the tatties:
450g new potatoes, scrubbed
3 tablespoons roughly chopped parsley
Freshly ground white pepper
For the spinach:
Freshly ground white pepper
3 tbsp water
Put a pan of water onto boil over a high heat. When boiling, add the potatoes and turn down to a simmer.
Use a pepper grinder on a coarse setting to grind the peppercorns, then spread over a small plate.
Cut the steaks in half along the equator to make four thin medallions. Smear all sides of the steaks with the Dijon mustard and then press them into the crushed peppercorns to coat. You can now season the steak with salt, if needed. Adding salt before this stage draws out the moisture from the meat preventing the pepper from sticking.
Heat a large frying pan until nice and hot. Add the sunflower oil and then the steaks and turn once to brown both sides. Don’t fiddle with them once they are in the pan or the peppercorn crust will fall off – the aim is to produce a good crusty coating on each surface.
Now add the butter and allow it to colour a nut brown, but don’t let it burn. Add the mushrooms and work around in the butter. As the mushrooms start to absorb the juices, turn the steaks again and allow them to cook for three or four minutes on both sides, turning once or twice and moving them around the pan to make sure the whole surface has plenty of colour and the edges of the meat are well sealed. Then transfer the steaks to a baking tray and leave in a warm place.
When the potatoes are tender, drain and place in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and, with the back of a fork, gently crush each potato until it just splits. Season, then add the parsley. Mix until all the butter has been absorbed, but don’t overwork. Keep warm.
Meanwhile, heat a medium frying pan or wok until hot. Add the butter and toss in the spinach. Mix well and then add the water, continuing to stir until wilted. Remove from the heat, season and set aside until ready to serve.
Add the whisky to the pan used to cook the steaks, and cook over a very high heat for 1 minute to boil off the alcohol. A word of warning – the whisky is likely to burst into flames. If this worries you, have a large lid handy to whack on the pan. Add the stock and reduce until really thick, and then pour in the cream. Reduce again, scraping and stirring together any gooey bits from the bottom of the pan. When it boils fiercely, it’s ready. Pour any juices from the resting meat back into the sauce.
Use a chef’s ring to make a little pile of potatoes in the middle of each plate. Sit a little pile of spinach on the potatoes, and the two medallions of steak on top. Spoon the sauce and the mushrooms over the steak, and serve.
Other reviews you may be interested in :
Cairnsmhor range of handbaked Scottish sweet and savoury treats
Recipes to use with your Crock-Pot Slow Cooker
Three Barrels Mulled Wine Cocktail - perfect winter warmer recipe