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Sous Vide: Beet Carpaccio

Without attempting to objectify the definition of "Carpaccio," we interpret it as being flat like a painting, with splashes of red.

Ingredients

Beets, 8 oz/225 g, accounting for a certain amount of waste.
Field greens, count 20 pieces.
Sweet anise (the vegetable), start with 1 each, 1 oz/30 g after slicing.
Extra virgin olive oil, 1 oz/25 ml.
Balsamic vinegar, 0.5 oz/12 ml.
Kosher salt, a few pinches.
Romano Cheese, 1 oz/30 g.
Lemon 1 wedge, approximately 1/6th of a lemon.
Volcanic salt or Kosher, 1 sprinkle.

Parsnip peel, from one parsnip.
Vegetable oil or shortening, approximately 1 cup to deep fry the parsnip peel.

Walnuts, 2 oz./60 g, to be spiced.
Corn syrup, 1 Tablespoon.
Sugar, 2 tablespoons.
Kosher salt, a pinch
Cayenne pepper, a pinch.

Equipment requirements

Immersion circulator, portable or stationary.
Heat rated container, minimum of 2 gallons/8 liters.
Heat rated sous vide bags or Ziploc freezer bags (Foodsaver, etc.)
Channel or chamber vacuum device–unnecessary if you use Ziploc freezer bags.
Mechanical slicer or mandolin.
Skillet, approximately 12″/ 300 mm diameter.
Metal tongs.

 

 

 

Serves 1-2
Level of difficulty, 2

Procedure:

Preheat the sous vide bath to
183 F/84 C

Seal the beet(s) in vacuum bags (or Ziploc Freezer Bags) and stage into the bath. Process for
2 hours.

This will pasteurize the beets. After the time has elapsed, remove the beets from the bath and submerge in iced/tap water until they achieve 70 F/21 C–approximately 15 minutes. Refrigerate to 40 F/4 C–this is necessary to maintain food safety. The beets can be kept in this state for at least a week without deteriorating.

Parsnip crisps
Heat at least 1″/2.5 cm oil in the skillet to 250 F/121 C. Add the parsnip peelings to the oil and stir them around with the tongs for about one minute. Do not allow them to brown. Remove from pan with the tongs and set aside. They will be limp when you pull them out of the oil, then become crisp in a minute or two.

Spiced walnuts
Heat the corn syrup, olive oil, 1 tablespoon of water, kosher salt and sugar in a pan to melt. Add the walnuts and toss to coat. Add the cayenne pepper and cook on low heat until bubbly and slightly browned–about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, pour out onto a non stick surface..

Slicing the beets
Remove the beets from the bag. If you are patient, you can rub the surface with a clean towel or paper towel to remove the peel. Otherwise, use a vegetable peeler. No matter which method you use, beets are much easier to peel after cooking than before. Set aside. Slice the sweet anise as thin as possible, set aside.

Slice the beets as thin as possible without compromising structural integrity. IMPORTANT: save the first few smaller slices for another purpose. Arrange each slice on the plate as you slice the beet, slightly overlapping so that the plate itself is visible only around the rim.

Assembly
Toss the field greens with a pinch of salt, a few drops of olive oil and Balsamic vinegar. Pinch into the center of the plate. Toss the sliced sweet anise with a few drops of EVOO, a few drops of Balsamic vinegar and a pinch of salt. Pinch the anise slaw on top of the field greens. Scatter a few pieces of the anise over the beets. Balance a few strands of the crisped parsnip on top.

Drizzle the beets with a few drops of olive oil. Arrange spiced walnuts over the top of the beets. Use a vegetable peeler or sharp knife to cut a few shards of Romano over the beets. Garnish with a lemon wedge. Sprinkle with the volcanic salt (or Kosher salt) at the last moment just before service.

Norm King

 

About

There are several accounts of the origin of Carpaccio. Fortunately, the dish was created within the last 100 years. Its romanticism is at least credible, if not precisely accurate. Even the Italian specification of the dish has evolved to include a wide variety of interpretations.
Among several characteristics, there must always be red because of the artist's fondness and use of that color. We will articulate this version with a combination of beets, walnuts, Romano cheese, sweet anise, field greens, and lemon.

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