This dish is for everyone who, like me, loves raw meat. Maybe it is the Viking in me that it appeals to. Even as a kid I loved beef tartare. And as soon as sushi appeared in Denmark, I was hooked on raw fish as well. The quality of course has to be outstanding, and perhaps that is part of the reason why I love raw meat and fish so much. Because it is really honest food. What you see is what you get, and you can’t disguise bad quality meat or fish in sushi or dishes like beef tartare or carpaccio. This Nordic carpaccio is my Scandinavian take on the classic Italian dish, and for me it is as honest as food gets. Nothing is disguised.
The strong flavors of the horseradish, radish and rye bread croutons I’ve found work amazingly with the raw and delicate texture of the beef, while the creaminess of the dressing and the delicate herbs add smoothness and freshness. See what you think, maybe it’ll bring out your inner Viking too.
Nordic carpaccio with horseradish cream, radish, herbs and rye bread croutons (serves 4 as a starter)
10 oz (250-300 g) premium quality beef tenderloin, completely clean filet (perhaps ask your butcher to clean it or get a chateaubriand cut)
4 tbsp fresh horseradish, finely grated
3 tbsp creme fraiche or sour cream (14-18% fat)
3 tbsp mayonnaise
5-6 radishes, very thinly sliced
1 handful fresh herbs: dill, chervil, chive, parsley (preferably a mix)
Rye bread chips – see recipe or use store bought
Salt and pepper
Optional: good quality canola or olive oil
1. First, prepare the horseradish cream by mixing the creme fraiche/sour cream, mayonnaise and finely grated horseradish in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Adjust with more horseradish if you like it stronger. Ideally, transfer to a plastic squeeze bottle and put in the fridge for later.
2. Next, season the beef tenderloin filet well with salt and pepper. Heat up a frying pan with a bit of oil on maximum heat and once the pan is really hot, quickly sear the tenderloin filet on all sides until well browned. If the pan is hot enough this should only take about 4-5 minutes.
3. Let the tenderloin filet cool down for a couple of minutes and then wrap it tightly in clingfilm and put in the freezer for an 1-2 hours until it has hardened. This way you’ll be able to cut paper thin carpaccio slices.
4. Wash and dry the herbs and radishes well and slice the radishes into thin slices. Now arrange the carpaccio on a large serving platter or individual dishes as you like. First, using a very sharp knife, slice paper thin slices of the beef carpaccio and place in an even layer. Then make little dollops of horseradish cream evenly spread over the carpaccio. Drizzle with radish slices, rye bread croutons and fresh herbs and perhaps a bit of canola or olive oil on top. Finish off with some freshly churned black pepper.