Makes: 10 portions. Cooking time: 3 hours.
— 1½ kg salted silverside of beef
— 1 onion studded with a bay leaf and clove
— 1 bouquet garni
— 400 grams carrots (barrel shaped)
— 300 grams button onions
— 300 grams turnips (barrel shaped)
— 500 grams Suet Pastefor dumplings
(1) Soak the pickled meat by standing it under cold running water for 2-3 hours.
(2) Place the meat into a deep sided saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and skim thoroughly.
(3) Add the studded onion and bouquet garni and gently simmer for approximately 2 hours.
(4) Add the vegetables in the order they take to be cooked: firs! the button onions followed by the carrots and then the turnips.
(5) When cooked transfer the meat to one saucepan and the vegetables to another with some of the cooking liquid. Discard the bouquet garni and studded onion. Retain and keep them warm.
(6) Divide the suet paste into 20 small pieces and mould them into round balls. Place into a shallow sided saucepan with some of the cooking liquor whilst it is gently simmering. Allow to cook for approximately 15–20 minutes.
(7) Carve the meat into slices 3–4 mm thick across the grain at an angle of 45°.
(8) Neatly arrange the slices on a flat oval type dish and garnish – with the vegetables and dumplings. Moisten with some of the strained cooking liquid.
To test if cooked pierce the meat with a trussing needle or skewer. If it penetrates the meat without having to use pressure the meat is cooked.
Assessment of the completed dish
(1) The meat should be evenly carved both in thickness and size. It should be pickled right through to the centre and have a characteristic reddish colour. The slices should just overlap and be surrounded with alternating bouquets of vegetables and dumplings. Some of the clear cooking liquid should be put in the dish to fill it just below the level of the meat.
(2) The meat should be moist and tender and full of flavour. It should be carved across the grain.
(3) The vegetables should be a suitable size in relation to the other commodities. They should be just cooked, of an even size and neat shape.
(4) The dumplings should be a suitable size in relation to the other commodities. They should be soft on the outside, slightly fluffy yet have a firm texture on the inside.
(5) The liquid should be clear and free from fat or other impurities.