B^3: Beets, Beef, and Bone Marrow
October 3, 2011
Hello, everyone! Earlier this week, I mentioned that I’d soon be unveiling two big new recipes, and I’m pleased to report that the first one is here! Beets, shallots, and beef roast braised in olive oil, bone marrow, and lemon juice. Don’t be put off by the amount of prep work – the recipe itself is quite easy, and it makes loads, so the time investment is worth it.
The recipe can easily be halved for smaller gatherings, or for home consumption, but I made it big on purpose because of the upcoming holidays. As I’m sure all you cavemen (and cavewomen) can agree, the holidays can be a difficult time to eat primal. So many dinners with family and friends, so much high-carb comfort food. It can be difficult to turn things down, either due to politeness or tradition. In my experience, the best strategy is to bring a good, hearty, paleo-friendly dish to these gatherings to ensure that you have something nutritious and filling to eat yourself, as well as to win you some points with the host in case you decide to turn down his/her signature pie, bread stuffing, or other SAD dish. In that light, here’s a great paleo dish that everyone will love. And you get the fun of, afterward, watching everyone’s faces as you tell them they just ate (and enjoyed) bone marrow. Here it is:
2 lbs beets, washed, dried, skin on, cut into 1/2″ cubes
2 lbs beef roast or stew meat, cut into 1/2″ cubes
1 cup bone marrow (learn how to extract bone marrow here) or butter, if marrow is unavailable
2 Tbsp + 1 cup olive oil
8-10 shallots, quartered lengthwise, layers separated
1/2 cup or more lemon juice
6-8 cloves of garlic, diced
1-2 Tbsp dried rosemary (optional)
1-2 cups parsley
2 cups walnuts
Preheat the oven to 375.
In a large heavy skillet (I favor cast iron), toast the walnuts with no oil over medium heat, stirring constantly to prevent burning:
Remove the walnuts when browned. Add the 2 Tbsp oil to the skillet, season with a little s&p, and sautee the garlic, shallots, and rosemary (if using) until fragrant, 2-3 minutes:
While the shallots and garlic cook, pulse the walnuts in a food processor until they are finely chopped, but not a flour. Something around the consistency of cornmeal or a little coarser:
Once the shallots and garlic are cooked through, add the marrow and olive oil to the pan and simmer for a minute or two to blend the oils. If you are NOT using cast iron, this is a fine time to add the lemon juice as well (cast iron and lemon don’t mix because the acidity of the lemon juice will eat away your cast iron’s seasoning):
Now, combine everything but the walnut meal in a big (and I mean BIG) bowl, season generously with s&p, and mix thoroughly. After everything is well mixed, divide it into two casserole dishes, cover them with foil, and put them in the oven for about 25 minutes:
After the 25 minutes, remove the foil, sprinkle the walnut meal on top:
After adding the nuts to each casserole dish, put them back in the oven for about 30 more minutes. It’s done cooking when the beets are still firm, but can be pierced with a fork fairly easily. Remove from the oven, taste, season with salt, pepper, and more lemon juice as necessary, and mix the added seasonings into the dish, allowing the crispy walnut pieces to get fully integrated into the other ingredients:
So there you have it: a delicious and colorful meal that will look right at home with all those hearty holiday dishes, but allow you to stay on track with your primal eating. I know it’s a fair amount of prep work, but it really feeds a crowd!