Hay-smoked Beef Fillet with Leeks

Hay-smoked Beef Fillet with Leek Purée and Ashed Leeks / SA Country Life (p)

At her cooking school in Hilton, award-winning KwaZulu-Natal chef Jackie Cameron puts her creative flair to work on heritage food. Try her Hay-smoked Beef Fillet with Leek Purée and Ashed Leeks.
— SA Country Life

Hay-smoked Beef Fillet with Leek Purée and Ashed Leeks

Makes 3 tapas portions



  • 15ml duck fat
  • 150g portion beef fillet, all sinew removed and cleaned
  • smoked salt
  • hay

Leek Purée

  • 100g fresh leeks
  • 250ml cream

Ashed Leeks

  • 100g fresh baby leeks


  1. For the beef, put the duck fat in a pan. When it is smoking hot, sear the beef fillet. Place some hay onto a small oven tray, place the portion of beef fillet on it, season with smoked salt and top with more hay. Cover with foil.
  2. Place the tray into the oven at 260°C and smoke for about 5 minutes. Remove from the oven, allow to rest, then cut the beef fillet into slices. To make the purée, blend the leeks and cream very well together. Strain and place into a piping bag. Set aside.
  3. To make ashed leeks, cut the baby leeks in half widthways and then again in half lengthwise. Place them onto a sheet of greaseproof paper and into the oven at 125°C for 30-60min. Remove some leeks at different times of cooking, to ensure different coloured ones, from golden-crisp ones to almost charcoal.
  4. To serve, slice the beef fillet and place onto your plate, pipe the leek purée on top and add the ashed leeks. Season with a good grind of fine salt and garnish with freshly picked herbs.

Wine suggestion: Sijnn Syrah