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Larded Blade with Prune and Pistachio Topping

ingredients

serves 8
1.75 kg (3 1/2 lb) blade of beef
90 g (3 oz) pork fat, cut into strips
1 tbsp cooking oil
3 tbsp (1 1/2 oz) 40 g butter
1 large onion, chopped
2 tsp salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tsp dried or 1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp wine vinegar
1 cup (8 fl oz) 250 ml meat stock
1 tbsp fruit chutney

for the topping

10 pitted prunes, chopped
60 g (2 oz) pistachio nuts, chopped

method

1. Lard meat with pork fat. Secure meat with string to retain its shape during cooking.

2. Brown meat in heated cooking oil and butter in a heavy-based saucepan. Add onion and saute until translucent. Add seasoning.

3. Heat soy sauce, wine vinegar, meat stock and chutney and add to meat. Cover with lid, reduce heat and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until meat is tender.

4. Remove meat from saucepan.

5. To prepare the topping, mix the ingredients together. Mix approximately 3 tbsp of the liquid in which meat was cooked with the prune and nut mixture and press firmly onto top of meat.

6. Place meat on the rack of a roasting tin and cook under a pre-heated grill for approximately 2 minutes.

7. If desired, boil the remaining cooking liquid until reduced and slightly thickened and serve separately

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