Highland Wagyu featherblade braised in tamarind

28 March, 2016

I love this recipe as the acidity from the tamarind cuts through the fattiness of the beef beautifully. Any good quality beef is fine to use here.  Obviously start this recipe two – three days before (depending if you are pressing the meat). For a pink interior piece of featherblade, we cook at 55°C for 24 hours. It is entirely possible for similar results (yet no pink interior) to cook at 10 hours at 85°C.

SERVES 8 as part of a tasting menu

1 x 700g piece of featherblade

50g spelt


10 cardamom pods

3g coriander seeds

1 star anise

2g Szechuan pepper


30g butter

1 large onion, diced

1 leek, sliced

1 carrot, cut into 1cm dice

1 celery stick, sliced

½ red chilli, sliced

1 garlic clove, sliced

½ tsp chilli flakes

50g dry tamarind paste

450g boiling water

500g good chicken stock


creamed potatoes, crispy spelt, steamed rainbow chard or purple sprouting broccoli and extra meat jus.

Sear the seasoned featherblade in a hot pan with the olive oil on all sides, until golden brown, set aside.

Dry fry the spices in a frying pan until the aroma is released, set aside.  

Heat the butter in a large pan and colour the vegetables until golden brown, then stir in the garlic, chilli and roasted spices. Add the dry tamarind, the boiling water and the chicken stock. Bring to the boil then remove from the heat. Pour over the beef and allow to cool. Transfer to a vacuum pack bag and seal tightly. Steam for 24 hours at 55°C.  

Wash the spelt, transfer to a pan, cover in 200ml water bring to the boil, simmer for 12 minutes. Strain and rinse. Dry at 82°C for 2 hours, open the door every 10 minutes. Then pat dry and deep fry in oil at 170°C until crispy.

Remove the meat from the oven and allow to rest for a few hours. Drain the liquid from the meat (save this liquid) and re-vac pack the meat, pressing the beef under something heavy in the fridge. The next day, cool, then press in the fridge, ideally overnight. Pass the cooking liquid and reduce until it is syrupy and like a glaze.

Portion the pressed beef; season and then fry in a frying pan until it is brown on all sides. Spoon over the glaze, so it is coated, but be very careful not to burn the glaze, baste the meat in this until it is dark brown and sticky.

Remove from the pan. Serve immediately with some potato purée, crispy spelt, rainbow chard and some meat jus.

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