Tuesday, January 6, 2009

On cooking

I've just made a very pleasant beef dish, having worked out the recipe from first principles. My mother would know it as Swedish Sailor's.

The recipe is very simple: a suitable amount of joined-up beef (skirt is ideal), a suitable amount of onion (somewhat more than you expect to want), and some potatoes, sliced into roughly centimetre-thick discs. Some swede is good but optional. Roughly chop and soften the onions, then add the cubed beef, with salt, lots of pepper, and appropriate herbs and spices (I use garlic, paprika and a little mustard). Brown the beef, then transfer it into a suitably sized ovenproof dish, and add the cubed swede if you want it. Lay the potatoes out in a layer on top, and deglaze the pan in which you browned the beef. Pour the resulting delicious stock over the potatoes, and cover the dish with foil. Bake in the middle of a 450°F oven for about 40 minutes, then remove the foil, move to the top shelf, and bake for another half hour or so, until the potatoes are browned and crispy. This goes very well with brassicas of any kind, and is also exceedingly good with a British-style beer.


  1. That sounds about right - I would not get involved with the spices, garlic etc. - you know what your Dad likes! However I have taken to using a small stock cube or a dash of concentrated bouillon instead.

    It is one of those family dishes that has evolved - I looked up the original instructions a few years back, and they were not at all the same as I do now, so you are simlply continuing the Darwinian Process!

  2. Well, I do add a little of that in deglazing!

    Initially, I didn't want to add the mustard, because I Don't Like Mustard in much the same way as Dad Doesn't Like Garlic. However, it seemed silly to have it around for one dish that I rarely make, so I gave it a go and found it helped.


After some particularly vile spam showed up, I have disabled the ability to comment as a nonny-mouse.