Grilled tenderloin Nicoise with Lemon Dill Olive Bernaise

Much to the chagrin of white tablecloth restaurants, great steak is not always about the steak, it’s about the rest of the dish.
In this presentation, the steak sits on a bed of sauteed vegetables and is topped with a custom bernaise-style sauce mixed with chopped black olives.  I added a few leftover hash browns (from a sunday breakfast out), a couple of fried tomatoes and some sauteed fresh shrimp.


4 tbsn olive oil
1 garlic clove, sliced
sprig of fresh thyme plus extra to garnish
6 fresh basil leaves
2 x 6oz ternderloin steaks
1 zucchini, cut lengthwise into 1/3 inch thick slices
1 italian eggplant, cut into 1/4 inch slices
1/2 red bell pepper, skinned, halved, desseded, cut into strips
1 tomatoe, cut into quarters
2 tbsn balsamic vinegar

For Lemon Dill Olive Bernaise:
1 tbsn chopped black olives
Lemon Dill dressing,
1 tsp old style mustard
2 tbsp plain yogourt
2 tbsp English salad dressing



Mix all the olive oil with the garlic and herbs in a dish. Add the meat and coat well with the marinade3. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate at room temperature for 4 hours.

Remove the meat, add the vegetables and the tomatoes to the oil, and marinate for a further 2 hours.

Cook the potatoes any way you wish. Frites, boiled, grilled, or reheated. Keep warm.

Heat the grill (I used an indoor grill because it was raining). Place vegetables and beef on the grill and wait till veggies are golden and lightly charred all over. Cook the beef to your liking (which should be medium rare–just saying).

Mix the olives with the other bearnaise ingredients and season to taste.

Arrange the vegetables on the plates and sprinkle the balsamic vinegar over. Arrange the beef on top of the vegetables and spoon a little sauce over each steak. Garnish with thyme and serve (with lightly oiled and grilled mushrooms and shrimp if you wish).


This and other recipes occasionally pop up in the Artichoke Hart series (available here), or the London Cartwright series (available here). Both chefs are fictional… the dishes are not.


Bistro Halloumi and Warm Olives

This is one of our favourite mid-summer simple suppers but since Spring has started early this year, I thought I’d pull it out and, Wow! what a treat to start the warm season off with. Halloumi doesn’t melt quickly so you can grill, saute, bake, etc. and it holds its shape reasonably well. When combined with warm olives and honey though, it is a golden nugget of flavour that literally melts in your mouth! (We also had mussels with it but that’s another recipe)


4oz halloumi cheese, cut into 1/2 inch blocks
1 cup of kalamata and manzanilla olives (latter stuffed or not)
4 pickled pearl onions
4 pickled cherries
4 tbsn honey
1/4 cup olive oil (garlic flavoured if you have it)


Heat up olive oil slowly in heavy (cast iron preferred) pan
Saute halloumi for about 3 minutes, getting them browned on each side
Remove halloumi and add olives, onions, cherries to pan. Reduce heat and cover with tin foil. Heat for 3 minutes or so
Put halloumi back in pan and drizzle with honey, then stir up gently

That’s it! Some crusty bread is also great for dipping while eating.

These recipes often show up in the Tales of the Artichoke Hart series, by Robert J. Morrow. Chef Arthur “Artichoke” Hart combines cooking with international intrigue on a regular basis. Click here for the latest book in the series

Official launch of my debut novel!


After seven years of effort, my debut novel is finally here.
New York Fried, the first in the Tales of the Artichoke Hart series, is a spy thriller full of international intrigue, suspense, character shenanigans, and a little humour.

You can get a digital copy right now, immediately downloadable, to read on your Kindle, smartphone, tablet or computer. It’s priced at just $2.99!

Download now:

If you don’t have the kindle app (for your phone or tablet), get it FREE here:

The printed version is 530 pages and takes about 4 days to deliver from Amazon. Order yours here:

Here’s the back cover trailer:

In 2012, President Obama signed an executive order mandating that during a national emergency, Homeland Security will take over all communications.

But the telecommunications giants control the switch.

Until now.

Foreign delegates descend upon a small town in upstate New York to view the “next big thing”. It allows nationwide access to the internet, without cable, phone lines, or wireless towers. And it’s virtually free!

Some seek to license it. Others want to steal it. But one man has a much bolder plan.

A former CIA staffer turned chef is unwittingly charged with preventing America’s first nationwide blackout. And his solution is a recipe to die for.