This Seared Lemon-Pepper Beef Carpaccio served with a handful of baby arugula and slivers of Pecorino Romano with garlic aioli and slices of toasted Ciabatta bread, literally it took minutes to make.
The one caveat about simple food is that you really do need the best quality ingredients you can find. There is no hiding with elaborate sauces and cooking methods.
You will need a nice chunk of beef tenderloin (fillet). Don’t attempt it with an inferior cut of meat. Make sure you put it in the freezer for a couple of hours before searing; even though the heat will defrost the outside, it will be easier to slice in very thin pieces, which is what you want.
5-ounce piece of beef tenderloin
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 Tablespoon lemon pepper*
1/2 Tablespoon salt
Handful of rosemary leaves
Pecorino Romano cheese (or Parmesan)
1 Tablespoon capers
For the aioli:
1 large egg yolk
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon juice, more to taste
Cracked black pepper
- Finely chop the rosemary leaves and spread on a clean cutting board to mix with the salt and lemon pepper. Rub the olive oil on the outside of the meat and press into the salt mixture.
- Heat a cast iron pan on the stove on maximum heat. Sear the tenderloin on each side for one minute–until just brown; immediately remove from pan and place back onto the cutting board. Holding the meat with tongs, slice very thinly with a sharp chef’s knife and press each piece with the backside of the knife to thin it down further. Arrange on a platter.
- To make the aioli, press garlic into the egg yolk with a fork to develop the flavour; add lemon juice, salt and pepper. Whisk a few drops of olive oil into the egg yolk until it starts to thicken and emulsify. Continuing to whisk, start pouring the rest of the oil in a very slow and thin stream until the aioli is completely thickened.
- Garnish carpaccio with capers, thinly grated slivers of cheese and a couple handfuls of arugula. Add small dollops of aioli and serve the rest on the side.
* lemon pepper is a seasoning of cracked black peppercorns and granulated lemon zest and can be found where you might buy better qualitiy spices
Darina Kopcok is a food writer and photographer based in Vancouver, BC. She writes the blog Gratinée, for which she also develops, styles and shoots each recipe. In addition to photographic training from Langara College, she holds an MFA from the University of British Columbia. She has a passion for Italian cuisine and French culinary technique.
Darina Kopcok is part of the Lifestyle Blog Network family.