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Turn the other cheek
I like cheap, in fact there can’t be many of us that actually like to spend lots of money, especially now when some of us are tightening our belts and trying to stretch each and every penny as far as it will go.
Not only do I like cheap, I love red meat; a juicy steak, slow roasted leg of lamb, I’ve even eaten minke whale before (not very PC, I know, but you have try these things when you get the chance).
So, how do you do cheap red meat? There are a multitude of cuts and chunks of meat that you may have overlooked without realising it. Offal is an acquired taste but it’s rich minerals and light on the wallet – lamb kidneys fried with onions and a touch of chilli on a thick wedge of buttered toast, amazing, seriously try it; or what about lamb hearts (I managed to get about a kilo for just a few quid) slow cooked in Buckfast, definitely interesting but my culinary skills didn’t do it justice.
Last night though, I treated myself to ox cheek – super cheap, dead easy, and it tastes delicious.
What’s in it?
1 ox cheek
1 handful of baby plum tomatoes
1 clove of garlic
Parsley (I like a lot)
Beef stock (only because I didn’t have any stout – which I’d used in the previous night’s steak pie)
Butter (very much a staple of this household)
Salt and pepper for when you think the dish deserves it
Sear the cheek on all sides in a frying pan, once it’s sealed take it out of the pan. In the same pan throw in the tomatoes, garlic, stock and parsley and cook at a reasonably high heat until the tomatoes start to burst the garlic begins to soften, put the cheek back into the pan for a minute or two and coat with the liquid.
Transfer the whole lot to an oven proof dish, cover tightly with foil and bake at 160 degrees for 2.5 hours. Once it’s out of the oven pour the juice into a sauce pan and reduce with a chunk of butter before plating.
Then you’ll end up with something that looks like this:
What you’ll have is an incredibly tender and juicy piece of meat with a good rich flavour. It would have gone perfectly with boiled potatoes but it was a huge chunk of ox so I didn’t bother – yes, I ate it all myself and I’m mighty proud of it.
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