4 beef cheeks (80g per cheek) – nerve removed 10g 00 flour 200ml red wine 200ml thick veal stock or chicken stock Salt and pepper, to taste 12 baby carrots 4 button onions Splash of extra virgin olive oil 1 clove garlic 5g butter Small bunch of thyme
For the fondue: 100ml of milk 200g Grana Padano 16 months 10g butter Nutmeg
Season the beef cheeks with salt and pepper and dust with flour. In a very hot pan, sear the cheeks in extra virgin olive oil for a few minutes until brown. Once browned, remove from the pan and transfer to a casserole dish. Add the garlic, thyme, red wine, stock, salt and pepper, and put in the oven (cover the dish with a sheet of grease proof paper, and then a lid) at 160°C for 1hr 30 minutes, until tender. Remove the cheeks and let the jus reduce further on the hob until nice and gooey.
Pass the jus through a colander and remove the garlic and thyme. Put the cheeks back into the dish and cover, leaving for a few minutes. Remove the dish from the hob, and spoon the jus on top to keep the beef moist and shiny. In the meantime, melt the Grana Padano and the 10g butter in the milk in a separate pan until completely melted. Add salt and pepper to taste – leave on the side. Blanch the carrots and button onions in salted boiling water for a few seconds and sauté in a little butter with salt and pepper to season.
To serve, place each cheek on a plate and pour the jus over it, serving the veg beside it. Pour over the cheese fondue to serve. Grana Padano ‘Crackling’ (Optional): For extra crunch, take the rind of the cheese and scrape away the dark hard part with a knife. Cut into inch-long strips, and put in a microwave for 30 seconds. Take out to cool, and break the crisp on top to serve.