I‘m really missing hosting dinner parties and generally feeding people! We’re also missing those rare but spontaneous dinners out when we feel like we’re on a real date night. One of our favourite places to frequent is (well now was) in Pop Brixton (about 100m away from our flat!) Smoke & Salt. Excitingly they are relocating to a permeant hide out in Tooting! Its a real gem and a place saved for special occasions. They have a sharing menu concept that changes frequently so it inspired me this evening for our weekly date night.
The first time we went to Smoke & Salt we had this potato and beef dish which was just amazing. We never got the chance to sample it again so I’ve had to create my own version! A creamy, garlic, mustard, cheesy sauce for some salty cooked potatoes and rare beef.
The salad adds a nice fresh clean contrast to the beef and potatoes on the side. We enjoyed some of the focaccia chopped and dipped into some rosemary flavoured extra virgin oil with G&Ts before the feast.
Dessert ice cream can be found here. Simply add a shot of Amaretto and one of hot coffee and serve !
Serves 2 (…hungry people as a sharing meal)
Seabass & Roasted Red Pepper sauce
- 2 seabass fillets
- 2 garlic gloves, finely chopped
- 2 shallots (or 1 small onion), finely chopped
- 1 tsp cumin, coriander, chilli flakes
- 350g flame roasted peppers – I actually used this jar from Odysea. You can make your own but I had these to hand in the pantry.
- 1 vegetable stock cube
- Handful basil
- Heat a tbsp of sunflower oil in a saucepan on a medium-low heat. Add the shallots and gently cook for about 10 minutes until soft.
- Add the garlic and cook for a 2 minutes.
- Add the spices and some generous seasoning and cook out for 1 minute, stirring well.
- Drain the peppers from the jar, chop roughly and add to the saucepan.
- Add about 100ml of stock and bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes before stirring in the basil.
- Using a food processor (or hand blender) pulse the sauce until smooth – add more stock as needed. I did this by eye. It needs to be like a thick soup. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed. Keep warm while you make the fish.
- Season the seabass fillets and score the skin side a few times to stop it curling up in cooking. Heat a tsp of sunflower oil in a hot frying pan over a high heat. Add the seabass, skin side down and press into the pan with a spatula quickly to avoid it curling. Cook skin side down for about 3 minutes. Turn onto the flesh side for 30 seconds and then remove from the heat.
- Spoon some sauce onto a plate and gently lay the fish onto. Squeeze over some lemon juice and enjoy!
Crispy roast new potatoes, mustard garlic cream sauce, rare beef rump
- 1 rump steak (or whatever cut you prefer)
- 1 tbsp whole black peppercorns
- New potatoes – about 300g but enough for two depending on hunger.
- 100ml creme fraiche
- 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
- 50g roule cheese
- 1 small handful fresh chives
- Splash milk
- Half the new potatoes and boil for about 5-8 minutes and then drain. Return to their saucepan and put the lid on. Shake the pot to bash the potatoes up a little and get the edges fluffy.
- Tip onto a baking tray, season and drizzle with sunflower oil. Toss so they are all coated in oil. Roast in a 220 over for about 20 minutes until golden and crispy.
- Using a pestle and mortar, crush the peppercorns really finely. Season the steak generouslly on both sides with as much pepper as you like – I like a nice crust! Add salt.
- BBQ or grill the steak for as long as you like. Let rest for 5 minutes minimum.
- Combine the creme fraiche, roule and wholegrain mustard in a saucepan. Gently heat stirring well to combine (Add splash of milk to thin the sauce when needed). Add half the chopped chives. Taste and season.
- To serve, put the potatoes in a serving dish and season. Carve the steak really thinly and lay over the potatoes. Drizzle / dollop the sauce over the top and garnish with the remaining chopped chives. Serve extra sauce on the side.
- 1 bunch asparagus
- Large handful broad beans (I used frozen)
- Large handful garden peas (I used frozen)
- 1 lemon, zest only
- 1 small bunch mint
- Parmesan cheese for serving
- Boil the broad beans for about 1 minutes and drain. You will need to tediously pick the beans from their pods into a serving dish. Use your nail to piece the skin and then just pop the bean out.
- Boil the peas for 1 minutes, drain and add to the broad beans.
- Drizzle the asparagus in a little oil and griddle on the BBQ or in a pan for just a few minutes making sure they are still al dente! Add to the bean/pea bowl.
- Chop the mint finely and add to the bowl. Grate the zest of 1/2 the lemon into the bowl and season all well. Toss to combine.
- Finally, using a peeler, peel some thin strips of parmesan cheese over the salad.