I chose bison for this dinner simply because I prefer the taste of bison to beef. You could certainly follow this recipe using the traditional preparation of tartare with beef, however. Although we recommend tenderloin, any cut of bison would work for this dish, provided you or your butcher removes all the sinew and silverskin from the meat. I suggest chopping the meat by hand, but if you feel unsure about your knife skills or just want an easier option, you can use a grinder. KitchenAid makes an excellent grinder attachment for its ubiquitous stand mixer.
Serves | 6 |
Pickled Mustard Seeds*
- 1 cup yellow mustard seeds
- 1½ cups water
- 1½ cups rice wine vinegar
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 Tbsp salt
- ¾ lb bison tenderloin, trimmed of all silverskin
- 3 Tbsp pickled mustard seeds
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1½ Tbsp high-quality sherry vinegar
- sea salt, to taste
Crispy Egg Yolk
- 2 Tbsp white vinegar
- 6 egg yolks
- 1½ cups flour, plus more if needed
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1 cup bread crumbs
- 3 cups peanut oil, for frying
| Preparation – Pickled Mustard Seeds | Place all ingredients in saucepan over medium heat. Let the liquid come to a simmer, being careful not to let it boil. Simmer for 45 minutes to an hour. At this point, the mustard seeds should be slightly plump and the liquid noticeably thicker. Place in a container and refrigerate, uncovered, until cool. You’ll have almost a full quart of liquid and pickled seeds but will only use 3 Tbsp of the seeds for this recipe. Leftover seeds will keep well in the refrigerator and are great for perking up store-bought salad dressings, mixing with mayo for a dipping sauce or tossing with beets for a surprising salad.
| Preparation – Bison Tartare | Slice tenderloin against the grain, thinly. The slices should be approximately ¼-inch thick. Stack two to three slices and cut them again into strips about ¼-inch wide. Line up the strips horizontally to yourself and cut again into small dice. Place in a bowl and add remaining ingredients. Toss to combine and refrigerate until ready to serve.
| Preparation – Crispy Egg Yolk | Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a light boil. Add vinegar to boiling water. Prepare an ice bath in a medium mixing bowl. Stir bubbling water in a counter-clockwise motion to create a vortex. Drop in one egg yolk and poach for 1 minute and 45 seconds. Remove yolk with slotted spoon and place in ice bath. Repeat with remaining egg yolks.
Prepare 3 small bowls: 1 with flour, 1 with milk and egg whisked together, and 1 with bread crumbs. Heat oil in a Dutch oven to 350ºF. Bread the egg yolks by dipping first in flour, then in the milk mixture and then in the bread crumbs. Make sure to coat evenly at all steps. Drop breaded yolks in oil and fry until golden brown. Remove yolks with a slotted spoon, place on paper towel to drain and dust with salt.
| To Serve | Place a small heap of tartare on each plate and make a small well in the center with a spoon. Place a crispy egg yolk inside each well. Dust with a salt, garnish with several pieces of crostini and serve.
* This recipe is from chef David Chang’s Momofuku cookbook. Chang, in turn, admits he took it straight from Tom Colicchio. No sense in fixin’ what ain’t broke.
SUGGESTED WINE PAIRING: Hermannhof Chambourcin Vin Gris Rosé 2010 from Hermannhof Vineyards, Hermann, Mo., hermannhof.com