This sums up the way I like things - simple, but sophisticated. You can make it even more impressive but putting it together with meat hot off the barbecue, or make it for a fancy picnic, cooking the beef at the last minute on a little disposable barbecue. But you can just as well cook the beef ahead and serve the salad indoors for lunch or dinner.
The craze for rocket seems to have settled down a little now. I quite like using the wider leaf version, which we first got to know before the peppery little leaves really took off.
400g beef fillet, left in one piece and trimmed
1/2tbsp olive oil
60g piece of Parmesan
80-100g rocket, washed and trimmed
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
for the dressing
1tbsp balsamic vinegar
4tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Heat a barbecue or ribbed griddle pan, season the beef well and cook it for about 4-5 minutes for rare, turning it every so often so that it cooks evenly. If you want the meat medium or even well done then cook it for another 3-5 minutes depending on the thickness. Leave to cool a little on a plate for 3-4 minutes, reserving any juices.
Meanwhile make the dressing by whisking together the balsamic vinegar and olive oil with any juices from the beef. Season. With a peeler, or sharp knife, shave slices of Parmesan as thinly as possible on to a plate. Slice the beef into 1/2-1cm slices, dress the rocket leaves and arrange on a large plate, or individual serving plates, and arrange slices of beef on top. Scatter the Parmesan shavings on top and eat immediately.Reuse content