In Switzerland we have a way of cutting meat up very finely known as "geschnetzeltes". You can cut up beef, pork and veal in this way. The most famous Swiss style is veal which is served in a cream sauce. Today I decided to cook beef. I did have the recipe from a Swiss Cook book, but over the years have played with it a bit and so I can sort of now say it is my style. So if you are sitting comfortably then I will begin.
First of all I took a walk into the garden to see if there were still some herbs around as it is now December. The weather has been quite mild, no big frosts and I found what I was looking for. Top left: sage, top right: thyme, bottom left: a bay leaf (not from the garden), bottom right: rosmary. I then tie them together in a bundle to cook with the meat. That way there are no bits and pieces floating around afterwards.
So here are all the ingredients I need. Paprika, Rice, diced bacon and a bottle of red wine for cooking. I usually take a reasonable one from the supermarket and this time it was a Swiss wine called Dôle from the French speaking part of Switzerland. Otherwise there is tomato purée, some mushrooms peeled and sliced, chopped onions, chopped garlic, the meat and my bouquet of herbs.
I then melt cooking butter in a flattish pressure cooker. I usually cook this meal in a pressure cooker as beef needs a bit more cooking to get tender and of course it goes a bit quicker. You can cook it in a normal pan, but would need about and hour, this way only 20 minutes.
The diced bacon, onion and garlic is now fried in the melted butter until it takes on the right colour and the onion gets a bit transparent.
Then the meat is added and fried until the pores of the meat are closed.
Then the herb bouquet, paprika and some salt is added as well as a few squirts of tomato puree. Actually it is according to your own taste how you spice the meat, this is just my suggestion. You can leave out the paprika and use another herbe that you prefer. If using paprika I would advise the milder sort and not to hot, otherwise it could spoil the taste of the meat. Of course if you are Hungarian, that would be no problem.
Then pour the red wine into the meat. You don't have to drown the meat, just a deciliter or two is enough. It was not east to hold the camera in one hand and the bottle in the other, but I managed it eventually.
All ingredients for the meat have now been included and the lid of the pressure cooker can now be put in place.
Now the pressure cooker can be kept on the heat for about 20 minutes and we can concentrate on cooking the rice.
Now I am sure most of us know how to cook rice, but there again everyone has their own favourite method, so here is mind. I usually melt some butter in a saucepan (butter again!).
Put the rice into the hot butter - again not easy with the camera in one hand and the rice in the other
and fry the rice until it becomes transparent.
Then top up the rice with hot water covering the rice by about 2 centimeters in height. To spice the rice I usually take a beef broth cube (known as bouillon in Switzerland) and crumble it into the rice.
Put the lid on the rice and leave to cook on a very low heat for about 15-20 minutes. If the liquid dries up then just replace with a little more. Do not drown the rice, otherwise it may become a bit soggy eventually. I always use American parboiled rice for this dish. It doesn't overcook.
Now fry the sliced mushrooms. I prefer to fry them separately. I find if you cook them with the meat they become a bit soft and loose their flavour.
After 20-30 minutes the meat should be ready. Remove the lid from the pressure cooker.
The rice is also now ready to be served.
You can of course serve a side salad with the meal, but upon mutual agreement with Mr. Swiss I decided this was enough for lunch on Saturday. Good eating - en guete.