Can you imagine a hotel with 1500 bedrooms? I couldn’t until I had the pleasure of cooking in one on a recent trip to Dubai. The Atlantis Hotel is quite simply breath taking. 1500 rooms and 3500 staff including 450 chefs. It is just unbelievable.
We cooked there two nights in a row with 145 for dinner the first night and 130 the second. It was a great honour to cook for the Irish Ambassador and we had a really busy few days in what is a beautiful part of the world.
It was fantastic to get the opportunity to cook and promote Irish produce and the hotel imports a lot of Irish produce for their restaurants. They have 16 restaurants and we cooked in one of them, ‘La Brassiere’, on both nights. We created a lovely ‘Taste of Ireland Menu’ and everything that we used was Irish and I’m glad to say the reaction was just great from the diners.
One of the big hits was the ‘John Stone Beef’. A fantastic Irish Producer their beef is absolutely beautiful. Dry aged and grass fed it is of the highest quality. We use it ourselves in MacNean House and Restaurant and it really is top quality.
For the main course we sous-vide the fillet of ‘John Stone Beef’. It was served it with creamed cabbage and parsnip puree along with some potato rosti and creamed mushroom and a red wine jus. It was a big hit. A group of chefs were among those who ate the second night and they were amazed at the quality of the Irish produce. But as we all know I have been saying for years how good are producers are!
Another reason for the trip to Dubai was to do some filming for the new series of ‘Home Chef’ which will be on RTE in January of next year. It has been so much fun filming this series (like all the series) and I can’t wait to see the final cut!
A speaking of cuts as we were talking about fantastic beef earlier in the blog here is a recipe for Grilled Rib Eye Steak with Sauce Diane. Enjoy.
Grilled Rib-Eye Steak with Sauce Diane
I always bring steaks to room temperature by removing them from the fridge 30 minutes before I want to cook them. This recipe uses my favourite cut, the rib-eye, which is still nice and tender but with enough fat and textures to make for an exciting chew.
4 x 225g (8oz) dry aged rib-eye steaks
100 ml olive oil
2 garlic cloves (crushed)
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
Ingredients for the sauce:
2 tblsp olive oil
25 g butter
1 shallot (finely chopped)
120 ml brandy
150 g button mushrooms (trimmed and sliced)
150 ml white wine
150 ml beef stock
1 tblsp worcestershire sauce
good pinch sugar
150 ml double cream
1 tblsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
squeeze of fresh lemon juice
salt and freshly ground black pepper
lightly dressed mixed green salad, to serve
1 – Trim the rib-eye steaks of any excess fat and place in a non-metallic dish and add the olive oil, garlic and thyme, tossing to coat. Cover with clingfilm and leave in fridge to marinate overnight.
2 – To make the sauce, heat a pan and add one of the tablespoons of the oil and the butter, then swirl until the butter has melted and is foaming.
3 – Tip in the shallot and mushrooms and sauté for 2-3 minutes until tender.
4 – Pour over the brandy, then use a match or tilt up the pan to catch the flame. It will flare up for about 5-10 seconds and then subside when the alcohol flame burns off.
5 – Add white wine and simmer until reduced by half.
6 – Stir the stock into the pan with the Worcestershire sauce, sugar and cream.
7 – Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes or until thickened and reduced to a sauce consistency which will coat the back of a wooden spoon, stirring occasionally.
8 – Stir in the parsley and lemon juice.
9 – Season to taste and use immediately or allow to cool down completely and store in a bowl covered with clingfilm in the fridge for up to 2 days.
10 – Remove the steaks from the fridge at least half an hour before you wish to cook them, then shake off any excess marinade and season to taste.
11 – Grill, barbecue or pan-fry the steaks over a fierce heat for 6-7 minutes for medium rare, or to your liking.
12 – Allow to rest for 5 minutes on warm plates.
13 – Reheat the sauce Diane gently in a pan when needed.
14 – Place the grilled steaks on warmed plates and spoon over the sauce and add some mixed salad to each plate to serve.