Here is a great meal for 2 that costs less than £8 and is super easy to prepare. A little more exotic than your standard supermarket steak, this is Ostrich steak from the Southern Cape of South Africa and brought to the shelves for consumption by Wholefoods. Having previously read that Ostrich meat, along with kangaroo, is very low in cholesterol and fat but high in protein, I was interested in discovering the flavour and texture of meat.
After a long day of work I was looking for an easy meal to prepare for dinner, but being a Saturday a feeling of decadence was also desired. Wholefoods is always a treat to walk around compared to a local chain supermarket, offering a wider range of seafood, meats, vegetables and condiments. Buying the Ostrich steaks not only felt like an exotic purchase, but it came at the gasping price of £4.99, which seems rather unfair to the elegant bird but after years of over-paying for everything in England, one is not going to argue at such a deal!
The steak comes in a ‘Marrakech Marinade’ which I was initially put off by as generally prepared and packed supermarket meats in marinade have a plastic like taste to them – nothing like the freshly made ones at home. I was pleased to taste a rich flavoured sauce of paprika, garlic and other herbs, which had depth and definitely lacked an obvious manufactured feel. Ostrich steak by the way tastes very similar to beef, and only needs to be cooked very quickly due to its low-fat content. Over-cooking will result in tough rubbery meat.
Instructions on the box suggested serving the steak along with buttered baked potatoes and green beans. Perfect simple combination and of course one that does not require constant attention. Par-boil the potato first so it halves the roasting time, then all that’s left are the beans which can be done in 5, and the steak which takes less than 3 minutes to cook.
Voilà! A classy exotic and might I say impressive (to dinner partners) meal that’s plate-licking good, cheap and whipped up with minimal effort. Notes for cooking are really make sure to stick to timings and do not over-cook the steak. It is literally 1 minute on each side in a hot pan and then the sauce for 30 seconds to warm. Steak is a delicate meat that needs precision cooking to taste its best. Here is the recipe below:
1 x Mossel Bay Free Range Ostrich Steak in Marrakesh Marinade
2 x large baking potatoes
150g green beans, trimmed
Salt and pepper
1. Preheat oven to 190C / 375F / Gas mark 5.
2. Prick potatoes with a fork all over. Place in a small pan of water and bring to the boil. Boil for approx 15 minutes.
3. Drain potatoes, wipe down gently yo remove water, then place each potato on its own square of aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, wrap up and roast in the oven for 45 minutes – 1 hour. Remove from oven and keep wrapped in foil.
4. Add a splash of water to a small saucepan along with your trimmed beans, bring water to the boil then immediately cover and turn to simmer. Leave for 5 minutes then turn off the heat. Do not remove the lid as it will let all the steam escape and interfere with cooking.
5. Now cook your steak. Remove steak from packaging and drain marinade into a separate bowl. Add a little olive oil to a hot frying pan and place the steak in the pan. Reduce heat to medium and cook on each side for 1 minute. Add marinade and heat through for 30 seconds.
6. To plate up, remove potatoes from foil, cut down the middle ad add a teaspoon of butter along with some salt and cracked pepper. Remove lid from green beans, add a tablespoon of butter and sprinkle of salt and pepper, mix well. Place your steak drizzled with marinade, buttery jacket potato and green beans on a plate and serve with good red wine or beer.