Corned girello with mustardy chickpeas, soft-boiled eggs & a celeriac, parsley & watercress salad

serves 6-8 starters
difficulty moderate
prep time 30mins (approx.) + overnight soaking
total time 2hrs (approx.)
main ingredient(s) beef, girello, chickpeas, celeriac, watercress, eggs, Celery & Celeriac

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In this dish, warm poached girello is the base of a full-flavoured salad that also features the humble chickpea. This little bean is so versatile that it has a permanent place in my culinary heart. I love chickpeas most when they are warm and freshly dressed.


150 grams dried chickpeas
1.5 kg corned girello
1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled, plus 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
1 celery stalk, roughly chopped
5 peppercorns
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs thyme
1 celeriac, peeled and diced into 3 cm chunks, optional
3 teaspoons ground cumin, optional
5 shallots, finely diced
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
50 ml sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
120 ml olive oil, plus a little extra for dressing celeriac, if using
salt and pepper
4 eggs
1/2 bunch parsley, picked
1/2 bunch watercress, picked
10 cornichons, sliced


Soak chickpeas in hot water overnight. Drain, add to a large pot and cover with cold water. Simmer for 30 to 40 minutes until tender. Drain.

In a large pot, place the girello, onion, whole garlic cloves, carrot, celery, peppercorns, bay leaf and thyme. Cover with cold water and bring to a simmer. Cook for 1 hour 15 minutes or until tender. Remove girello, cut into 4 mm slices and keep warm.

If using celeriac, preheat oven to 180°C. Toss the celeriac pieces in a baking dish with a little olive oil and ground cumin. Roast for 20 to 30 minutes until tender.

In a large, deep frypan over medium heat add a little oil and slowly cook the shallots and chopped garlic for 10 minutes. Add the mustard, vinegar and olive oil. Turn off the heat, add the warm chickpeas and celeriac (if using) and stir gently until all the dressing is absorbed. Season liberally with salt and pepper.

Bring a small pot of water to the boil and add the eggs. Boil for 6 minutes until soft-boiled. Remove and let cool in cold water. Peel and halve.

Lay the girello slices on a platter. Scatter with the chickpeas and celeriac, if using. Top with parsley, watercress, soft-boiled eggs and sliced cornichons.

Comments & Reviews1

Sarah Shields's picture
Sarah Shields
Sep 3, 2012

Hi, I was so excited to find a girello roast in thomas dux I grabbed it, but now I see I need to corn it first! Do you have a great method and recipe? thanks!

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