You'll need to begin this recipe three days ahead.
- 12 thick asparagus spears (about 1½ bunches), halved widthways, thinly shaved on a mandolin
- 2 punnets baby mustard cress, trimmed
- ¼ cup finely grated parmesan
- 2 tsp thyme leaves
- To serve: Manchego, shaved
- ⅓ cup thyme sprigs
- 1 tbsp black peppercorns
- 600 gm coarse sea salt
- 400 gm white sugar
- 1 small beef fillet (about 600gm), trimmed
Mustard and buttermilk dressing
- 60 ml buttermilk (¼ cup)
- 1 tbsp sour cream
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
- Finely grated rind of 1 lemon and juice of ½
- 1For cured beef, coarsely crush thyme and peppercorns in a mortar and pestle. Stir in salt and sugar and transfer half to a non-reactive container large enough to fit beef snugly. Add beef, scatter over remaining salt mixture, cover and refrigerate to cure (3 days), then brush salt mixture from beef, pat dry with absorbent paper and season with freshly ground black pepper.
- 2For mustard and buttermilk dressing, whisk ingredients in a bowl, season to taste and set aside.
- 3Place asparagus in a bowl, drizzle over a little dressing, season to taste, toss to combine and set aside to marinate (5 minutes). Add cress, parmesan and thyme, season to taste and toss to combine.
- 4Thinly slice beef across the grain, arrange on a platter, top with asparagus mixture and Manchego and serve with extra dressing.
This recipe is from the January 2012 issue of .
Drink Suggestion: Aromatic Spanish white such as a verdejo from Rueda. Drink suggestion by Max Allen