ROSAMUND’S SPICED LONGHORN BEEF
- 2 kg joint of lean Longhorn beef (see above – silverside, topside and thick flank work best)
- 225 g soft brown sugar
- 225 g salt
- 20 g allspice berries (or ground allspice)
- 20 g juniper berries
- 20 g black peppercorns
- 20 g ground mace
- Good heaped teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 cloves
- 20 g salt petre
- You can grind the individual spices by hand in a pestle and mortar if you want to but I find it works perfectly well to put all the ingredients apart from the meat in a food processor and grind until fairly fine. Rub this mixture all over the meat and into any cracks you can find, place the meat in a bowl and tip any remaining spice mixture over and round it. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge. After 24hours, the meat will have begun to exude a syrupy, spicy liquid. Baste well with this liquid and replace in the fridge. Repeat the exercise daily over a period of 5-9 days: there will be more liquid every day and the longer you leave the meat, the spicier it will become.
- When ready to cook the meat, remove it from the bowl and discard the spicy liquid. Put it in a large saucepan and cover it with cold water. Bring to the boil and simmer very gently indeed (you want the bubbles of water to barely break the surface – I use a simmering mat) for two hours. Turn off the heat and, if you plan to eat the meat cold, leave it to cool in the liquid. If you want to eat it hot, add 10 minutes to the cooking time, remove the meat from the liquid and rest for half an hour in a warm place before carving. (See above for serving suggestions). Once cold, the beef will keep in the fridge for several weeks.