Fillet of Beef with Oriental Flavours


serves 4 - 6
fillet of beef (Tenderloin Steak), taken from the tail end weighing about 455 g (1 lb) in a piece

for the marinade

1/2 cup (6 tbsp) 75 ml coconut milk
2 tbsp say sauce
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp rice vinegar or sherry vinegar
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
2 or 3 green or red chillis, seeded and thinly sliced
2 stalks of lemon grass, thinly sliced
1 sprig of lime leaves or lemon verbena leaves
2 or 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
4 spring onions, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 in (2.5 cm) fresh ginger peeled and grated
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander seeds
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground allspice

for the garnish

fresh coriander leaves
basil leaves
green or red chillis


1. Trim any fat and sinews from the meat and put it in a bowl. Combine all the remaining ingredients, pour over the meat, cover and leave to marinate in the refrigerator overnight.

2. When you are ready to cook the meat, make sure that it has been brought back to room temperature.

3. Heat a well-seasoned heavy iron frying pan until it is very hot. Remove the meat from the marinade, dry it very thoroughly and, if necessary, lightly oil the pan before you put the meat in to stop it sticking. Press the meat well down with a spatula and fry for 10 minutes. Turn it over and fry until done to your liking.

4. Remove the meat from the pan, cover it and leave it for 10 minutes or so before slicing it thinly and obliquely.

5. Meanwhile, make a sauce by boiling up the marinade, adding more coconut milk or a splash of rice wine if you wish.

6. The meat can also be roasted at 200°C (400°F) gas mark 6 for 15 minutes.

7. Garnish as above.

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