Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Beef Fat

I am off to London on Monday to talk about FAT and I have discovered that suet (veal/beef kidney fat) is in short supply. I'm shocked. I think of England as being the home of suet - steak and kidney pudding, jam roly-poly, steamed pudding, mincemeat and so on. Perhaps that is the problem - these are all winter dishes not popular when the weather warms up.
I am not making any of these classics, the suet is for a fruit cobbler, fruit topped with suet biscuits or, as I can finally say since I'll be in England, scones, instead of butter as the fat I use finely grated suet. This was one of my discoveries while writing Fat: An Appreciation of a Misunderstood Ingredient, with Recipes.
I made scones using all sorts of fat and the suet scones were my favourite -rich but light.
Another favourite beef fat is marrow and roasted marrow bones are easy to make at home. I used to buy my bones cut into pieces cross-wise, now I ask my butcher for large pieces of femur cut lengthwise, just look at these beautiful ones my Paris butcher M Joël Lachable prepared for me.

Simply soak them overnight in salted water to remove the blood then roast them in a very hot oven and serve with fleur de sel and toast. The advantage of cutting the bones this way is that it they cook more quickly and it's easier to remove the marrow, no need for a fancy marrow spoon just a teaspoon or even just your knife.

Of course when I served them I totally forgot about taking a photograph, I was desperate to get at that marrow while it was still warm. However, here is a photo of the same dish at one of my favourite Paris restaurants Ribouldingue. You can read about what else I've eaten there in a previous post.

Mine looked just as good. If you love bone marrow try making this at home. The hardest part is preparing enough warm toast.


Phil said...

Congratulations Jennifer! Great Radio 4 interview. I thought you put across a very balanced, sensible debate and am looking forward to trying your tempting bone marrow! Fiona:)

Roz said...

Wow! How great to hear some common sense about fat (on Radio 4 in the UK) for a change! This is so rare. We are constantly bombarded with anti-fat propaganda, and as we eat less animal fat we keep getting fatter and fatter!

You rightly pointed out that populations that eat lots of saturated fat don't necessarily have more heart disease (hence the need for all the "paradoxes") It was interesting hearing the conventional nutritionist explaining the paradoxes by saying you can't take fat in isolation and the French also take more exercise. However she seemed to think it was OK to take fat in isolation when the data backed up the cholesterol hypothesis!

Honestly, why have so many people fallen for this rubbish? I help people lose weight without dieting and I almost invariably have to get them to eat MORE fat. What you said about low fat yogurts was so true - they are full of sugar and sweeteners and they don't fill you up! I must start recommending your book to my clients. If you'd like a look at my blog, it is http://www.nondietweightloss.blogspot.com/ I talk about fat too!

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