This, to me, is the perfect dinner: simple, impeccable, beautiful. Of course, it doesn't have to be a June dinner, or even eaten in summer—I cook the beef all through the year and I'm such a fan of the frozen pea that I've got no reason to ration the unfashionable but deeply pleasurable salad, either. But when all the food comes together like this, it works at its best. I've given two choices for the beef simply because fillet for 8 is not always going to be a practical suggestion. If you want to make this a more formal dinner, then try the wine- and anchovy- braised fillet. The tagliata variation, a fat slab of meat cut from all along the rump, marinated, cooked briefly, then carved in squat, juicy slices on the diagonal, is the best thing you can do with your outside grill, pace, perhaps, the butterflied lamb of the menu preceding this. But if you're kitchen-bound, a 425 degree F oven is absolutely fine for roasting the meat.
The tagliata needs marinating for a day, and the strawberries need macerat- ing for 3 hours. If you wanted to strike a more voluptuously grand note, you could end instead with the white tiramisu; see page 111 of the book.
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