It was a beautiful day yesterday, and as the evening approached we were thinking it would be really nice to eat outdoors given that the nights are beginning to draw in. Sorry to remind you of that!
However the gas bottle for our BBQ is with ‘son the younger’, who ‘borrowed’ it earlier in the summer, which meant cooking might be somewhat problematic. However Gary had already had some thoughts about this and is plotting ahead for a whole new section of our garden for next year, so he suggested we had a go at cooking on a Finnish Stove.
What’s a Finnish Stove you ask? Well I didn’t know before hand either. It’s a wonderful way of cooking outdoors when you don’t have a stove, but want to use a pan. You basically cut a log into segments and standing them up stuff the inside gaps with small bits of wood and dry grass, set a match and away it goes. Your pan simply sits on the top and it gets very hot indeed. Obviously health and safety needs some consideration and you need to give some thought on where exactly you have your fire, you don’t want to set a vast expanse of woodland on fire for instance! Ours was nicely contained in a brick surround so it couldn’t fall over either, which is worth thinking about.
It’s a lovely way to spend an evening and once we’d eaten the fire carried on, doing a grand job of keeping the midges away and we sat out until it was dark watching the fog roll into the valley below.
- 500g lean beef or this would work really well with venison,
- 250ml of cream,
- 1 glass of white wine,
- 1 heaped tsp of French Mustard/ Pommery,
- Half an onion finely chopped,
- 1 clove of garlic crushed,
- 2 good sized mushrooms sliced,
- 1tbsp olive oil
- 1 knob of butter
Put your pan on the heat, add the olive oil and butter and melt the butter.
Fry off the onion and garlic without letting them brown and remove from the pan.
Now add the beef to the pan and sear until it is brown all over.
Return the onions and garlic to the pan and de-glaze the pan with the glass of wine.
Next add the cream and mustard and stir well before adding the mushrooms.
Simmer until you are happy with the consistency of the sauce and the beef is nicely cooked.
Serve with french bread and more glasses of wine.