Lotus, Sesame, Beef
Simple dish. Super delicious. From right to left: Marinated lotus root, salted and fried, salted rare beef rump, homemade sweet ginger and sesame seed paste. Eat across the plate. Great little entree or just make more of it.
For the Black Sesame Paste (makes about 200g of Paste)
- 150g Black Sesame Seeds
- 2 Teaspoons of Grated Ginger
- 1 Clove of Garlic
- 1/4 Cup of Rice Wine Vinegar
- 1/4 Cup Soy Sauce
- 15g Palm Sugar
For the Marinated Lotus Root (for two)
- 6 Rounds of Lotus Root (ideally fresh)
- 1 Cup of Rice Wine Vinegar
For the Beef
- Beef Rump, or if you're feeling wealthy... Eye Fillet.
Start by marinating the lotus root. Lay them out in a shallow tray and bathe in the rice wine vinegar.
Next, take your beef and trim of silver skin or excess fat. Dry the meat with a paper towel, and then salt generously.
Move over to the sesame paste. In a food processor, whiz the sesame seeds and slowly pour in the rice wine vinegar, soy sauce. Add the ginger and garlic, and keep processing. If it's still not loose, add water until it is flowing freely. Transfer to a non-stick frying pan, add the palm sugar and on a low heat, slowly reduce the mixture and dissolve the palm sugar.
Once dissolved, add salt, pepper, and more soy if you think it needs it. The balance you want is a nudge of sweet, umami and saltiness of the soy and the nuttiness of the sesame. Cook down to a paste. Once you're there - taste again. Does it need anything? Maybe the lightest touch of vinegar? More soy?
Back to the meat! The meat will have given a bit of water to the salt. Dry the water off with a paper towel and salt lightly again.
Drain the lotus roots, dry and salt lightly.
Heat up two frying pans. Oil the pans - I like using lard or tallow. Fry the lotus root until brown and crispy on each side. When they're nearly done, sear your beef on a screaming high heat. Cook on all sides until the meat has a deep crust.
Set aside, rest for a couple of minutes. Carve the meat into slices, and serve with the lotus root and a strip of the sesame paste.