Kate O'Toole serves up this delicious starter.


  • 225 g air-dried unsmoked sliabh luchra beef (jack mccarthy’s, kanturk)
  • 1 tblsp best aged balsamic vinegar (25-year-old preferably)
  • 150 g organic rocket leaves
  • 80 g desmond cheese shavings
  • 4 large fresh ripe black figs (quartered)
  • 1-2 tablespoons first cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  • Slice the beef very, very thinly (best get this done with a proper butcher’s slicer as it should be wafer thin). Divide the beef into four portions and fan out in the centre of four serving plates.
  • Put the Balsamic vinegar in a bowl and toss the rocket leaves in it, then scatter them on top of the beef.
  • Place the figs on the rocket and sprinkle the Desmond cheese shavings over everything. Drizzle everything lightly with a little olive oil and season with freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately.

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