This beef fillet steak pairs wonderfully with the sweetness of the beetroot and saltiness of the goat’s cheese dressing


  • 3 large beetroots, scrubbed
  • 1kg piece beef eye fillet (centre cut), trimmed
  • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 150ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 red onions, cut into
  • 5mm-thick rounds
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 2T chopped thyme leaves
  • 100ml red wine vinegar
  • 1T wholegrain mustard
  • 500ml watercress sprigs


  • 150g soft goat’s cheese
  • 4T buttermilk
  • 2t white wine vinegar
  • 1t chopped thyme leaves
  • 1t finely grated lemon zest, plus 1t lemon juice
  • 1T chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 2–3T warm water
  • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Wrap each beetroot in foil, then place in a baking dish and bake for an hour or until tender. When cool enough to handle, peel and cut into 5mm thick slices.
  3. Season the beef with salt and pepper, then heat a tablespoon of the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the beef and cook, turning, for 3–4 minutes until browned all over.
  4. Place the onion rounds and garlic in a roasting pan, drizzle with a little more olive oil, then season with salt and pepper. Place the beef on top and sprinkle with the thyme leaves. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes for medium rare (or until cooked to your liking), then transfer the beef to a plate, cover loosely with foil and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
  5. Use a spatula to carefully set aside the garlic and onion, keeping the rounds intact. 6. Pour the pan juices into a bowl, then make a vinaigrette by slowly whisking in the red wine vinegar, mustard, remaining oil and any juices from the beef. Season with salt and pepper and toss half of this with half the beetroot.
  6. To make the goat’s cheese dressing, whisk the ingredients together (or briefly process in a food processor) until smooth, adding enough warm water to make a loose dressing. Season to taste.
  7. To serve, cut the beef into 2cm-thick slices. Place a beetroot slice on each serving plate, then top with a slice of beef, some onion and a few sprigs of watercress. Repeat the layers, then spoon over the remaining vinaigrette.
  8. Serve accompanied by the goat’s cheese dressing.

COOK’S TIP: The goat’s cheese dressing will keep covered in the fridge for a day.

(Serves 4)