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Steak frites et sauce béarnaise
main courses | serves 1
This is an interesting, although counterintuitive, way to cook chips. It’s perfect when cooking for one because it doesn’t require vast amounts of oil that you then have to dispose of. The amount of butter in the sauce may seem a lot, but this will serve 6 – it’s impossible to make béarnaise in smaller quantities, and it will last a few days in the fridge.
1. Slice the potato lengthwise, then into thin chips. Place in a bowl of iced water and set aside.
2. Make the béarnaise. Clarify the butter by melting slowly in a pan over a low heat. The milk solids will rise to the surface as foam; skim this off and continue to cook until there’s no more foam. Strain through a sieve lined with kitchen paper and leave to cool.
3. In a small pan, heat the vinegar with the shallot, peppercorns, 2 tarragon sprigs and 1 tablespoon of water. Simmer gently till the liquid has almost evaporated. Whisk in the egg yolks and keep whisking over a very low heat until the yolks emulsify and thicken, about 3–5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add the clarified butter in a thin stream, whisking continuously till you have a thick sauce. Pass through a fine sieve and discard the solids. Add a squeeze of lemon and season to taste. Finely chop remaining tarragon and add to the sauce with the chervil (if using). Set aside.
4. Drain the chips and pat dry. Pour 2cm oil into a small frying pan. Place the chips in the oil while it’s still cold then place the pan over a medium heat and leave the chips to cook slowly, about 15–20 minutes. Shake the pan occasionally to ensure even cooking.
5. Meanwhile, cook the steak. Heat a griddle or frying pan until smoking hot.
Recipe Rebecca Rauter
Photo Carolyn Barber
from Issue 22
ingredients• 1 floury potato, such as king edward, maris piper or desiree
• Groundnut or sunflower oil, for frying
• 1 sirloin steak (approx 150g)
• Olive oil
• 125g unsalted butter
• 1tbsp white wine or cider vinegar
• 1 small shallot, finely chopped
• 4 peppercorns
• 4 tarragon sprigs
• 2 egg yolks
• A squeeze of lemon
• A few chervil sprigs, finely chopped