Tafelspitz with apple and horseradish sauce

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Meat mains

Tafelspitz with apple and horseradish sauce

Main Serves 4 2h 40 min
Tafelspitz is the triangular cap off a whole rump, but the technique works well with a piece of topside and, because it's gently cooked in liquid and isn't subjected to the fierce sear/sizzle, it's particularly suitable for small joints.



  • 1 beef joint
  • stock veg: 3 carrots, 2 celery sticks, 1 onion (skin on), all roughly chopped
  • 1 bouquet garni (thyme, bay leaves, parsley stalks if you have any)
  • few fresh/dried mushrooms (optional)
  • 4 small onions
  • 12 small waxy potatoes
  • 8 medium carrots
  • 1 head celery
  • 1 tbsp chives, chopped

for the apple and horseradish sauce

  • 2 large bramley apples, peeled, cored and diced
  • 3 cloves
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • 100g fresh horseradish, finely grated


Prep time: 10 min
Cooking time: 2h 30 min


  • Step 1

    In a casserole dish, cover the meat with water and add the stock veg and bouquet garni. Bring to the simmer and transfer to a 140°C/Gas Mark 1 oven. Allow 1½ hours for a 550g joint, or 2 hours for a 1kg joint. While the meat is cooking, you could add some fresh or dried mushrooms for extra richness and depth.

Make the apple and horseradish sauce

  • Step 1

    Put the apples in a pan with the cloves, sugar and 50ml water. Cook gently, stirring occasionally, until the apple has collapsed. Add the lemon and horseradish. If you like your horseradish hot, remove the pan from the heat and spoon into a bowl. If you don't mind some of the flavour dissipating, you can bring it back up to temperature and 'hot fill' into sterile jars – it will keep, unopened, for ages.
  • Step 2

    Once the meat is cooked, remove it from the liquid and gently press as it cools; a balanced plate with a bag of sugar will do. While the meat cools, remove the stock veg and herbs with a slotted spoon, discard, and skim off any fat. Bring the broth back to the boil and cook the onions, potatoes, carrots and trimmed celery in it until tender. Carve the beef and serve on hot plates with the vegetables, a ladle of broth, a sprinkling of chives and the apple sauce.

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