Haute cuisine for the culinary-challenged

Haute cuisine for the culinary-challenged

Story by Abigail O'Gorman, Staff Writer

I’m a picky eater. Leftover lasagna is no friend of mine, and I flee in fear from anything microwaveable. You could say I’m a food snob. Problem is, I’m a food snob who can’t cook. I would rather attempt to read 10 volumes of untranslated Nietzsche than try to make sense of a single cookbook. Luckily, “fancy” cuisine isn’t all that hard to make. Even I can do it, and if I can do it, anyone can. Here’s how to…

Make steak tartare like a champ

You shall need:
one pound of ground tenderloin
an egg
a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce
a table spoon of finely chopped red onions
two tablespoons of Dijon mustard
one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
one teaspoon of chopped capers
one tablespoon of chopped anchovies
a bit of salt
a bit of pepper
a bowl

Yes, steak tartare. That raw stuff. Many of us Americans find it to be rather nasty. However, I can assure you that approximately 100 percent of the people hating on steak tartare have never actually tried steak tartare, because that mess is DELICIOUS. Since it is raw meat, however, there is a risk of contracting something unpleasant by eating it. If you buy the right sort of meat and prepare it properly, this risk is extremely low, but still, do not under any circumstances eat raw meat if you aren’t prepared to face the consequences of your HIGHLY irresponsible behavior.

The most important thing about making steak tartare is buying the right steak. You must get tenderloin; please don’t attempt to consume raw ground chuck and then blame me for your ensuing food poisoning. Supermarket meat just won’t cut it. Remember that you’re going to be eating this stuff raw, so its quality and the way it’s been handled are very important. You’ll want to get your steak at a butcher’s shop or meat market. I bought mine at a nice little meat shop in Mount Pleasant, but there are plenty of places around here. Have the butcher grind it up, and be sure to tell him what you’re going to be using it for so he won’t give you anything old or low-quality.

Once you bring your delicious new acquisition home, wash your hands and put the steak in a largish bowl. Next, add the egg, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, onions, olive oil, and capers. Stir them thoroughly so that everything is nice and evenly mixed. Dash in a bit of salt and pepper if you fancy that sort of thing. You could also put anchovies in, but I didn’t because anchovies are flippin’ nasty.

After your steak tartare is all stirred up, put it on a plate and form it into a paté shape. You could also garnish it with parsley if you want to get extra fancy. Voila! Eat it while pretending to be a high-society bon vivant enjoying lunch in a posh Parisian bistro. Oh, one can dream…