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Beat the Chef with Oliver Dunne

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Can you take the heat to compete against a professional chef? We have someone who's daring enough to step up to the plate"

But who will be the winner? Can they beat our chef!?

We have an official judge, and our entire crew to judge who are the winners, and we'll let you know once both dishes are made, tested and tasted at the end of the show.

There is only one rule, we will give both viewer and chef an ingredient that they need to include in their recipe, for example , If we give them chocolate, they can cook or bake any chocolate dish they like.

The ingredient for today:-

Today we have selected Mary Gorman from Dublin to go up against our chef. Mary thinks her Steak with gorgonzola mashed potatoes will beat Oliver's Beef Oxtail and mash.
But watch out Mary, No chef has been beaten yet!

Oliver Dunne - Head chef at Bon Appetit

About The Chef
Born in 1977 and raised on Dublin's Northside, Oliver Dunne has spent his career surrounded by award winning chefs - Conrad Gallagher, Gary Rhodes and Gordon Ramsay to name but a few. After taking over the helm of Bon Appetit in 2006, Oliver was awarded his own Michelin Star in January 2008.

Mary Gorman

Mary is 48 and from Athlone. She works in Postbank in Athone. She loves to cook and is very very excited about coming on the afternoon show!, particularly because her mum Ann Gorman is an avid afternoon show watcher and will be so excited to see her daughter cook live on the show!
Mary has just bought a new house and can't wait to entertain when she moves in. When she does entertain, she loves to cook Mexican food and she bakes every weekend.
She loves to keep fit and goes to gym regularly. She also loves movies and traveling and she lived in the states for 9 years. She has many cookery books from chefs such as Nigella Lawson, Mario Batalli. Her fave chef of all time is Keith Floyde who sadly passed away a number of weeks ago.

Oliver's dish:
Braised Oxtail with Apricots and Buttered Mash Potato

. 2L Chicken / Beef Stock
. 1 Oxtail
. 1 Onion
. 1 Carrot
. 2 Shallots
. 2 Garlic Cloves
. 2 Celery Sticks
. 2 Sprigs Thyme
. 2 Bay Leaves
. 10 White Peppercorns
. 1 Bottle Red Wine
. 100g Dried Apricots

Parmesan Polenta


  • 75g Instant Polenta
  • 500g Chicken stock
  • 50g Grated Parmesan
  • 100g Cream
  • 1tblsp Chopped Chives


Whisk the polenta into the boiling chicken stock and cook on a low heat for 5 minutes.
Add the cream, parmesan & chives and season to taste.

1. Chop oxtail and all the vegetables and place in a container with thyme, bay leaf and peppercorns and cover with red wine for two days.
2. Strain off wine and remove oxtail from vegetables and fry in vegetable oil until browned all over.
3. When brown add vegetables and continue to colour. When vegetables are caramelised add the strained wine and reduce until almost evaporated.
4. Cover with stock and cook for 3 hours until meat falls away from the bone.
5. Strain off liquid and reduce to nice gravy consistency.
6. For the apricots, place in a pot of cold water and bring to the boil. When boiled, turn off heat and leave to sit until cold.
7. For the potato, bake potatoes, scoop out and mash when cooked. Mix 1kg of cooked potato with butter, milk and season.
8. To finish, dice apricots and add to picked oxtail.
9. Put in a pot with oxtail sauce and 2 tblsp of apricot cooking water, reduce by half and stir in one spoon of butter and serve with hot mashed potato.

Mary's dish:

Garlic Butter Basted Steak with Gorgonzola Mashed Potatoes, Sauteed Spinach and Red Wine Sauce.


. Steak for One (Rump, Sirloin, Filet, Ribeye - this works with any cut really)
. 3 or 4 Potatoes (Depending on how hungry you are)
. Baby Spinach or Regular Leaf Spinach if you can't get the Baby
. 50gr Gorgonzola
. 100gr Butter
. 50ml Cream/Whole Milk
. 4 or 5 cloves of Garlic
. Finely diced Shallot
. Glass of Red Wine
. Salt
. Fresh Ground Black Pepper
. A few dashes of Olive Oil
. Splash of Lemon Juice
. Sprig of Rosemary (not essential)


1. Place your potatoes in a saucepan of water and bring to the boil until cooked. Drain.
2. Most of the time I don't even bother peeling the spuds. I like how the skins look in the mash, especially if you're using Kerr Pinks or Roosters.
3. If you don't like to leave the skins on...... just peel them.
4. Mash the spuds with about a third of the butter, and cream/milk. You may not need all of the cream, so you can save it for your coffee later.
5. Add a nice twist of Fresh Black Pepper and a pinch of salt, then crumble in the yummy Gorgonzola and give it a stir and set aside.
6. If you have been unable to buy baby spinach, you will need to prepare your larger leafed spinach. Wash, dry, and remove any hard stems.
7. Set aside until needed.
8. Heat a non-stick Griddle or Sauté Pan so it gets good and hot for your steak. Season your steak on both sides with S & P and a drizzle of Olive Oil and throw on the Pan.
9. The time will vary depending on the cut and the size of your steak. If I am cooking for my Dad I will leave it for a couple of days - just to make sure it is good and dead!
10. For anyone else, about 3 ½ minutes per side for Medium Rare to about 5 minutes a side for more Medium Well.
11. While on the pan smear the steak with some butter mixed with the finely diced shallot and garlic for more flavour.
12. Turn the steak and cook on the other side. Once happy that it is cooked to your temperature, take the steak off the pan and set aside to rest for a few minutes.
13. In the same pan, add most of the glass of wine to the beefy juices. I find, cooking is thirsty work and always leave a drop of wine for myself!
14. Stir up and bring slightly to boil and simmer on a medium heat until it reduces by about half. Once reduced add a knob of butter and stir.
15. Heat up a clean, non-stick pan. Add some olive oil and chopped garlic. Throw in your spinach and allow to wilt a little.
16. It only takes a minute to cook, squeeze a splash of lemon and add a bit of S&P too.
17. On a warmed dinner plate, place a good dollop of your cheesy mash in the centre. Place your hot garlicky spinach on the side.
18. Put the steak on top and drizzle your sauce over the top or around the plate. Garnish with a sprig of Rosemary - just coz it looks fancy!
19. Pour another glass of wine, stick on Corrie and Bon Appetite!