Beef carpaccio is one of those dishes that looks incredibly ambitious. The fact that it’s main component is raw beef can seem daunting to the home cook, as well. But it is a dish that can be easily replicated at home, if given the proper preparation.
First and foremost, get the best, freshest, highest quality beef you can find. You don’t need a lot of it, half a pound easily serves 4-5 appetizer portions, but it needs to be great quality. If you have a local butcher, then get your meat there. I generally use Filet Mignon when I make carpaccio, but tenderloin works just as well.
As long as you start with the highest quality meat, and keep it below 41 degrees F until it is consumed, you shouldn’t have any worries about contamination or food borne illness. I like to put my serving plates in the freezer before I plate this dish, also, to help keep the meat at a nice, cold temperature.
Beef Carpaccio with Horseradish Vinaigrette
adapted from Darina Allen’s Forgotten Skills of Cooking
1/2 lb of organic, Prime Filet Mignon (fresh, not frozen)
1 cup arugula
2 egg yolks
2 TBS dijon mustard
1 TBS sugar
2 TBS red wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 TBS prepared horseradish
1 tsp fresh chopped parsely
1 tsp fresh chopped tarragon
Place the meat, well wrapped, into your freezer to firm up while you put together your vinaigrette (if you are prepping your vinaigrette in advance, just freeze the meat for an hour before you slice it).
In a bowl, combine the egg yolks, mustard, sugar, and vinegar. Mix well. Whisk in the oil drop by drop, as though making a mayonnaise. When all oil is incorporated, add the horseradish, parsley, and tarragon. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Remove filet from freezer (after allowing 30minutes to 1 hour for the meat to firm up). Slice the meat, carefully, with a very sharp knife into 1/2 slices. Place a slice of meat between two sheets of oiled plastic wrap or parchment paper. Roll, gently, with a rolling pin until translucent and doubled in size. Peel away one layer of plastic wrap, place the meat on a chilled plate, then remove the other piece of plastic. Repeat for each slice of meat. Drizzle with horseradish vinaigrette, and top with arugula.