Tagliata means ‘cut’ or ‘sliced’ in Italian and there are many variations on this recipe which, at its base, is a rare steak, sliced up and served with salad and a lemon, garlic and Parmesan dressing. Jill Dupleix creates a lamb version here, as does Frank Fariello on his blog, whereas the likes of Heston B and David Eyre stick to the classic steak version. What they all share is speed (I defy anyone to take more than 15 minutes to make this), lightness (it has no starch or wheat) and summer flavours. My version is based on Heston’s, because his is the first I tried, but like some of the commenters on his recipe, I have massively cut down on the oil and don’t use rosemary. However, his method of cooking a steak rare works every time; I highly recommend the 2½-minutes-in-total-turning-every-15-seconds system. And if you don’t like rare steak this probably isn’t for you since it’s key that the meat has the required juiciness.
For two people you will need:
Cupboard (or things you may already have)
Sea salt and black pepper
4 tablespoons olive oil, plus a little extra for frying
3 cloves of garlic
2 steaks (you want something thick but not too thick so sirloin is good, fillet is not), about 250-300g each
40g fresh Parmesan (in a chunk, not grated)
1. Zest the lemon then juice it, peel and crush the garlic cloves with the blade of a knife (use a crusher if you prefer not to eat big bits of it) then wash the rocket and spin it dry or leave it to drain. Finally, slice the Parmesan into thin pieces.
2. Heat a little oil in a frying pan and get it really hot. If the steak has a thick edge of fat, too thick to eat happily, trim it off.
3. Fry the steaks for 2½ minutes, turning them over every 15 seconds. Once done, put on a plate to one side to rest.
4. Drain off most of the oil from the frying pan and take it off the heat. Now add 4 tablespoons more oil, the garlic, lemon zest and juice to the pan and leave (still off the heat) for a few minutes whilst the meat rests and the oil takes on the flavours.
5. Meanwhile, slice the steak into thick pieces and add any juices to the dressing.
6. Arrange the rocket on plates, fan out the slices of steak on top, then add the pieces of Parmesan, pour over the dressing and season with some sea salt and black pepper.