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Austrian Food - Boiled Beef (Tafelspitz)

Updated on November 12, 2012

Austrian Boiled Beef (Tafelspitz)

Tafelspitz Being Sliced
Tafelspitz Being Sliced
Austrian Food
Austrian Food
Plated Tafelspitz-1
Plated Tafelspitz-1
Plated Tafelspitz-2
Plated Tafelspitz-2
Franz Joseph I as a Young Man
Franz Joseph I as a Young Man

Austrian Food

5 stars from 1 rating of Boiled Beef (Tafelspitz)


Austrian Boiled Beef (Tafelspitz)


Boiled beef (tafelspitz) is the national food of Austria. The Austrian Emperor, Franz Joseph I was a great lover of boiled beef and thus the entire nation soon adopted it. It is usually made with bottom sirloin, beef soup bones, various root vegetables and spices. It is often served with roasted potatoes and horseradish sauce.


When I was growing up, soup bones were inexpensive and readily available but today it is easier and cheaper to use beef stock or broth. While the bottom sirloin is well suited to making this dish, you can use a cheaper cut but it should have a small layer of white fat to give it flavor.


I like to add carrots, celery, onions and parsley root but you can use whatever vegetables you like. I usually just buy a commercial horseradish sauce that is creamed to make it milder.




Preparation Time:

30 Minutes

Cooking Time:

3 Hours



3 Lbs. of Beef Loin or Brisket trimmed of excess fat

1 Parsley Root peeled and chopped

2 Carrots scraped and chopped

2 Celery Stalks cleaned and chopped

1 Large Onion peeled and chopped

3 Tablespoons of Oil

2 – 32 Oz. Boxes of Beef Stock

10 Whole Allspice

10 Black Peppercorns

1 Bay Leaf

1 Tablespoon of Salt

Horseradish Sauce


Cooking Instructions:

  1. Heat the oil in a large soup kettle or Dutch oven and sweat the onions, carrots, celery and parsley root.
  2. Add the beef stock, bay leaf, allspice, peppercorns, salt and the beef. The stock should just cover the meat.
  3. Bring the contents to a boil and gently simmer covered for 2-3 hours until the meat is tender. Be sure to check the broth and adjust the salt if necessary.
  4. Remove the Beef to a serving platter and slice it against the grain.
  5. The broth can be strained and served as a first course.
  6. Serve the meat with horseradish sauce and oven roasted potatoes.


Oven Roasted Potatoes:

You can serve any kind of potatoes that you like, but I prefer Oven roasted potatoes. You will need:

2 Sticks of Butter clarified

1 Lb. of New, Fingerling or small Red Skin Potatoes washed.

A large oven proof frying pan

  1. Heat the butter in the frying pan on top of the stove.
  2. Add the potatoes in one layer and gradually brown them on all sides turning them over as necessary.
  3. Salt and pepper the potatoes to taste and finish cooking them in a 300 F oven until they are fork tender.

You can also do this with large potatoes but you will have to peel them and cut them into uniform sized pieces that will be easy to brown on top of the stove.



Collage of Vienna, Austria

Vienna, Austria


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    • tirelesstraveler profile image

      Judy Specht 5 years ago from California

      Delicious sounding. Like the history of the recipe.