November 26, 2009

Fresh Oysters with Preserved Lemon and Shallot Dressing; Vegetable Ragout with Couscous; Steak with Chermoula Dressing

For a special family dinner last night, I bought 3 dozen fresh oysters from Richmond Oysters (437 Church Street, Richmond). They were sourced from St.Helen's in Tasmania and sold for $12 a dozen. I served them two ways - Natural with lemon and with a French shallot dressing. This was followed by a  Moroccan-spiced Vegetable Ragout, ladled over warm Couscous and served with Eye Fillet Steaks, cooked to medium-rare.

Natural Oysters with Fresh Lemon

Preserved Lemon - I removed the pulp, finely chopped the rind and sprinkled onto the oysters before drizzling over the shallot dressing

Fresh Oysters with Preserved Lemon and Shallot Dressing
For the dressing, I combined finely chopped french shallots with red wine vinegar, extra virgin olive oil and cracked pepper

 For symmetrically shaped steaks, wrap the beef fillet tightly into a log with cling wrap and refrigerate until needed

 Leave the cling wrap on when slicing into steaks - Try to cut each slice with a similar thickness so that they will all be ready at the same time when pan-frying together. If some are thinner than others, just add them to the pan a minute or so after the thicker steaks

Chermoula Dressing - I brushed this onto the steaks after they rested. To make, finely chop red radish, shallots, coriander and parsley, and combine well with salt and pepper, ground cumin and sweet paprika, fresh lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil.

Fluffy Couscous - For one serving, boil ½ cup water in a pot, add 1 tsp salt and 1 tbs olive oil, turn off the heat, pour in ½ cup couscous and quickly stir it together. Cover with a lid for about 3 minutes, then turn the heat back on and mix in 1 tsp butter and cracked pepper to taste (ensure the bottom of the pot doesn't burn). Finally, stir in finely chopped herbs of your choice and fluff it all up with a fork (I used coriander, parsley and spearmint)

Moroccan Vegetable Ragout with Couscous and Chermoula Eye Fillet Steak

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