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Steak Tartare


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I'd like to try to make this at home and I just have a couple of questions.

1) Will tenderloin from Whole Foods work, or does it have to be "special" in some way?

2) I like to think that I'm pretty good with a knife, but I haven't taken any classes or anything. Will I end up turning the meat into a liquidy mush if I try to cut it up myself? Should I ask the folks at WF to grind it for me instead?

Thanks!

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I wouldn't use tenderloin -- I prefer something a little more rich and flavorful, like a sirloin.

I've made it with a knife before, comes out fine but is a little labor intensive. Getting a courser grind at the butcher works fine.

Hmm. I suppose I just assumed that tenderloin was the way to go.

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I have seen many recipes call for tenderloin as the cut for this, but I agree with WM that sirloin is the way to go.

Thanks for all the advicce. Cuts of meat and the steaks they produce often confuse the heck out of me. I know that there are several cuts taken from the sirloin, but can somebody point me in the right direction for what market ready cut I should look for?

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Made some tonight using the recipe from the Gourmet cookbook, and it turned out really well. Sirloin certainly seems to be the ideal cut here, and cutting it by knife did take awhile, but was worth it. How great is it to learn that you can make one of your favorite restaurant dishes (that usually goes for $15-20) at home for three bucks? I know this applies to endless menu items, but for some reason I had a mental block against steak tartare.

Now that it is gone, how am I going to resist making this for breakfast?

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It's actually really good for breakfast - especially the morning after. Think of it as a more elegant steak & eggs.

Was the Gourmet version classic, or did they try to get cute with it?

So how long does it keep for? If I make two servings, one for dinner and one for breakfast the next day, I'm good to go?

The Gourmet recipe was fairly traditional: capers, horseradish, mustard, s+p, worcestershire, and green onion. There was supposed to be some radish and watercress on the plate for show but I left that out. No egg, either. Do the rest of you typically go the egg route?

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I like the flavor and texture when egg yolks are included. And it should be fine if refrigerated overnight covered with plastic wrap.

Damn this is making me hungry.

The gourmet recipe calls for chopping the meat and in a separate bowl mixing all the seasonings, etc. together and then adding them to the meat. So methinks another option for breakfast tartare would be to chop the meat the night before and separately mix the seasonings, then blend the two together (plus yolk) in the morning.

Maybe we should do a tartare tasting at some point...

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I'm going to give the Les Halles recipe for steak tartare a shot tonite. One question that I've contemplated is whether or not using dry aged beef is safe or even desirable. Any thoughts on it?

Ostensibly, one of the reasons why dry aged beef is so tender is that the enzymes have been to work. In other words, the meat has rotted under controlled circumstances. I wonder how this translates in terms of food safety.

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I'm going to give the Les Halles recipe for steak tartare a shot tonite. One question that I've contemplated is whether or not using dry aged beef is safe or even desirable. Any thoughts on it?

Ostensibly, one of the reasons why dry aged beef is so tender is that the enzymes have been to work. In other words, the meat has rotted under controlled circumstances. I wonder how this translates in terms of food safety.

Dude, it's the raw eggs that are going to have you sluicing out of both ends all night. A few beef enzymes (which one assumes are present to some degree even in non-aged beef) are nuthin'.

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Since no one bothered to answer my own questions I will since I discovered a few things not already mentioned.....

Canales' Angus sirloin makes a great tartare but will only grind it for you if you purchase large amounts, 2lb or more. Their grinder only works for large amounts so the pound I wanted wasn't enough. Speaking of which, a lb. makes 4 generous appetizer sized portions.

On to the grinding...I can't physically chop that amount meat fine enough so I wasn't sure what I was going to do. I ended up laughing in the face of Bourdain and bowing to the gods of Joy of Cooking and used the Cuisinart to grind the meat. It worked perfectly. I won't bother asking a butcher in the future.

Couldn't find quail eggs so stuck with chicken but next time I plan on using a chicken in the recipe and serve with quail on top.

Didn't bother using a recipe but we consulted Joy of Cooking, Bittman and Bourdain. I used good anchovies, capers, dijon, Worcestershire, cornishon and shiso leaves. The addition of shiso was excellent.

I molded using a cookie cutter shaped like DC and it worked brilliantly. Converted two tartare virgins and pleased the one palate I worried about enough that she ate the rest for breakfast this morning.

Like everyone else said, it's intimidating until you've made it and everyone is fine the next day; then it's absurdly easy.

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Since no one bothered to answer my own questions I will since I discovered a few things not already mentioned.....

Canales' Angus sirloin makes a great tartare but will only grind it for you if you purchase large amounts, 2lb or more. Their grinder only works for large amounts so the pound I wanted wasn't enough. Speaking of which, a lb. makes 4 generous appetizer sized portions.

On to the grinding...I can't physically chop that amount meat fine enough so I wasn't sure what I was going to do. I ended up laughing in the face of Bourdain and bowing to the gods of Joy of Cooking and used the Cuisinart to grind the meat. It worked perfectly. I won't bother asking a butcher in the future.

Couldn't find quail eggs so stuck with chicken but next time I plan on using a chicken in the recipe and serve with quail on top.

Didn't bother using a recipe but we consulted Joy of Cooking, Bittman and Bourdain. I used good anchovies, capers, dijon, Worcestershire, cornishon and shiso leaves. The addition of shiso was excellent.

I molded using a cookie cutter shaped like DC and it worked brilliantly. Converted two tartare virgins and pleased the one palate I worried about enough that she ate the rest for breakfast this morning.

Like everyone else said, it's intimidating until you've made it and everyone is fine the next day; then it's absurdly easy.

Sounds like success, thanks for the inspiration!

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In Switzerland you can by steak tartare in all the major grocery stores.  It's about 9chf per serving, which is basically free when you consider that at the restaurants they charge 28 chf for the same portion.  That being said, there is a butcher up the street who has beautiful meat so I plan on hitting her up to make my own.  Once I figure out how to appropriately ask her to grind my meat*.

I don't have a food processor and the only one I've seen couldn't combine olive oil with the hummos we were making so I doubt it will be able to grind the meat for tartare.

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In Switzerland you can by steak tartare in all the major grocery stores.  It's about9ch f per serving, which is basically free when you consider that at the restaurants they charge 28 chf for the same portion.

What's the equivalent in US$ and what size portions are you talking about? My parents discovered steak tartare when we lived in Germany back in the 60s, so I'm happy to see that the Euros haven't abandoned it.

PS: I'm really enjoying your posts about the food you are finding in Switzerland.

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