This impressive yet dead easy dish is equally good served at a casual barbeque with salad, or a more formal affair with all the trimmings. Use a selection of whatever herbs you have on hand, such as thyme, rosemary, flat-leaf parsley, oregano and basil, or use coriander, lemongrass, grated lime rind and ginger for an Asian twist. The success of this dish is in the quality of ingredients, so make sure the herbs are fresh and the beef is grade one. By all means make your own Aioli from scratch, but as this blog is about making entertaining easy, we do like to offer a few acceptable shortcuts from time to time! A Shiraz is the perfect wine accompaniment.
Ingredients (serves 4-6):
¾ cup chopped fresh mixed herbs
1kg beef fillet, trimmed
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 cup aioli (garlic mayonnaise, available from supermarkets and delis)
1-2 tablespoons hot water
Garnish: baby rocket leaves
Method (15 mins prep, 30-40 mins cook):
1. Preheat oven to 200°C (180°C fan-forced).
2. Spread the chopped herbs on a sheet of baking paper.
3. Brush the beef with 2 tablespoons olive oil, season with salt and pepper, spread over the crushed garlic then roll in herbs to coat, pressing in with your fingers. This can be done up to 3 hours prior to cooking).
4. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a flameproof baking pan over a medium-high heat.
5. Add the beef fillet, sear each side until evenly browned, about 3-4 minutes.
6. Transfer to oven and cook for 20 minutes for rare (meat thermometer should read 60°C), or 30 minutes for medium (meat thermometer should read 65°C).
7. Cover the beef loosely with foil and let rest for 10 minutes.
8. Meanwhile, add a little hot water to the aioli so it is of a pouring consistency.
9. Thickly slice the beef, then transfer to plates or a platter. Drizzle with the aioli and garnish with the rocket leaves.