There is a new favourite recipe in town! My beef carpaccio with shallots, shaved parmesan and a crazy good anchovy aioli is just the dish to crack open a nice bottle of red, kick back on your deck with friends/family and enjoy!
Why I Love This Recipe
- its damn tasty
- it will impress your mates
- it's not too heavy so more room for the wine 😉
- can be prepared in advance for parties/dinner
- less complicated than you think to make!
I'm in love with this beef carpaccio recipe firstly because it tastes so good! The fresh thin slices of beef tenderloin mixed with a lightly acidic dressing, salty parmesan cheese and a deliciously creamy and salty anchovy aioli is nothing short of heaven!
The carpaccio dish is one that can all be prepared in advance so perfect to serve to a group, for lunch or as an appetizer for dinner. Once your friends take one look at how beautiful it is and then tuck in they will be suitably impressed 😉
What Is Carpaccio?
Carpaccio means thinly sliced meat (or sometimes fish) in Italian. The meat is often rubbed in spices (but not always), seared hard to form a crust and then sliced thinly. It is then served with an olive oil dressing or sauce to accompany. It's perfect to serve/eat at lunch or as a starter for dinner.
It is said to originate from Harry's Bar in Venice where the owner and founder Giuseppe Cipriani created and made it back in the 1950s. It didn't truly become popular in the latter part of the century and nowadays there are 1000's of variations of beef carpaccio out there - including mine;)
Making Beef Carpaccio
Beef carpaccio is actually surprisingly simple to make - well, isn't everything when you know-how! First, it starts with the beef. The best and most common cut used is beef tenderloin/eye fillet. This cut contains low amounts of fat, is super lean/tender and almost melts in the mouth when sliced thinly enough! You can step up your game and start getting wagyu (if you can afford it) but a good quality fresh piece from the centre of the tenderloin works just fine.
Rolling The Beef
Step 1 and step 3 is to roll the beef. Using the centre of the beef tenderloin as it's the most cylindrical piece and most tender you want to roll your beef in clingfilm so that it holds its round shape. Some butchers will give it to you trimmed and you can omit this step but if you are hacking away at a tenderloin at home you may need to roll it tightly in clingfilm to start.
This step is also done after searing but more on that in a moment.
This step is optional but I like the extra flavour a crust gives you and also the colour contrast from the seared edges to the bright red beef in the centre. Drizzle the beef in a little oil and coat it with salt and black pepper. You can get fancy and use things like fennel seeds, Szechuan peppercorns, pink peppercorns, cumin etc but given we are adding an anchovy aioli to this beef carpaccio I've gone with a classic crust.
Next, get a pan smoking hot and add a little oil. Using tongs hold the beef for 20-30 seconds and then rotate until you get a nice hard sear all around the beef. It's important to not over sear one side as you are looking for a nice even crust to your beef carpaccio so pay close attention.
Slicing The Beef
Once seared, allow the beef to cool on a plate. About 5-10 minutes will do. Then wrap tightly lengthways (so it retains its cylindrical shape) in cling film. I usually do 2-3 layers so it holds its shape. Next, place your soon to be beef carpaccio into the freezer for about 1-2 hours. This won't freeze the beef but it will make it firm enough that you can easily slice it thinly.
Start to prepare the rest of the ingredients!
Once it has hardened in the freezer, remove the cling film and using the sharpest knife you have, slice the beef as thin as you can. If you get a few scraggy ends, don't stress - you aren't serving it to Gordon Ramsay. Are you!?
This stuff could be bottled and sold! A simple homemade aioli with the addition of crushed/finely chopped anchovies makes for a creamy, salty sauce with just the right amount of acidity to it.
Typically an aioli is made from garlic, egg yolks, mustard, lemon juice, salt & oil. Nothing too different about this one except we omit adding salt & mustard as anchovies have plenty salt in them and we don't want to overpower the delicate anchovy taste with mustard. Then, we finish it with a little cold water to thin it out a touch.
Start by finely chopping the anchovies and then adding them to a mini food processor with crushed garlic, lemon juice & egg yolks. Blitz it for a few seconds to combine and then gradually add your oil. I'm a fan of olive oil but any neutral oil will work too.
Tips, Tricks & FAQ's
The best cut to use is eye fillet/tenderloin but if you want a meatier flavour you could use sirloin/porterhouse. Alternatively, you can go fish-based and use tuna or salmon
Carpaccio that has been seared and/or sliced can keep in the fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight container. If you remove it from the fridge and serve it then dispose of the leftovers as the fluctuation in temperatures could cause bacteria to grow
Of course - I personally love the anchovy aioli with the beef carpaccio but alternatives could be a horseradish aioli, chilli aioli, chipotle aioli or even black garlic aioli
Beef Carpaccio Wine Pairing
Oh man, have I got a good one for you this week! It's not a grape I have tasted a huge amount of before, actually come to think about it I'm not even sure I have tasted it. There are a lot of more European grapes showing up here in Australia. I, for one, am loving it! Don't get me wrong, I LOVE Australian wines but I do miss a little bit of the magic of Europe.
The Zontes Footstep Canto, Sangiovese Lagrein is described as their favourite blend of grapes. The Sangiovese offers savoury notes and structure to the wine. The lagrein, a descendant of syrah and pinot noir brings bold dark flavours. It's not high in alcohol, drinks well now but defo has the goods to hide away for 5 years or so.
With velvety tannins, notes of cedar, ink, licorice and almost a little milk chocolate it pairs really well with the beef carpaccio as we have some acidity and fat/richness from the aioli and with that little peppercorn crust on the carpaccio it really helps the dish stand up. There is beautiful lingering length and for $30 a bottle, you are getting a wine that can be popped any night of the week and enjoyed if you are flying solo or entertaining guests!
Alternative Raw, Crudo or Tartare Dishes
Inspired by my beef carpaccio and need more crudo or tartare dishes in your life? Here are a few on my site and others to get your juices flowing!
Asian Kingfish Crudo by Yours Truly
Salmon Crudo w/ Homemade Ponzu by Yours Truly
Fresh Tangy Easy Salmon Tartare by Laura Tobin of 'Your Guardian Chef'
Tuna Crudo w/ Avo, Pea Puree & Radishes by Yours Truly
Steak Tartare by Betty Davies of 'Slow The Cook Down'
Happy Cooking & Happy Eating Friends!
- 400 g eye fillet
- 1 tbsp capers
- 1 handful rocket leaves
- Parmesan cheese
- ½ shallot – thinly sliced
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 4 anchovies
- 1 clove garlic - crushed
- 2 egg yolks
- 100 ml olive oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp cold water
- Chef Knives
- Chopping board
- frying pan
- cling film
- small food processor
- Measuring utensils
- Drizzle beef in 1 tbsp olive oil and season with salt and pepper
- In a hot frying pan add 1 tbsp oil and sear beef for 30 seconds each side
- Remove and allow to cool. Once cooled wrap tightly in cling film and place in the freezer for 1 hour to chill – this makes it easier to slice (make aioli)
- Mix 2 tbsp olive oil and 1 tbsp lemon juice together and set aside
- Slice beef as thinly as possible and layer on a plate
- Add shallots, capers and aioli. Drizzle dressing over the top and finish with rocket leaves and shaved parmesan
- Chop the anchovies finely and add to a small food processor along with crushed garlic, egg yolks & lemon juice
- Blend the ingredients to combine and gradually add the olive oil until it thickens
- Whisk the cold water through, taste and adjust seasoning as necessary
- Store in the fridge until ready to use
- make sure your pan is red hot when searing the beef and do so for only 30 seconds per side so you get a nice crust
- wrapping the beef in cling film helps keep its shape
- freezing the beef slightly will help to get even slices when cutting it – it won’t be frozen just slightly firmer to touch
- only use fresh beef when making this dish – good quality beef is safe to eat raw but only fresh meat – not frozen.