Irish Sunday roast: How to make the perfect roast beef
Is there a better meal than roast beef and Yorkshire puddings? It is loved by everyone (except vegetarians and cows, I guess). Sunday would not be the same without roast beef for lunch.
This is the simplest of meals so it is shocking how many times I’ve been looking forward to a great Sunday roast only to have it resemble shoe leather. Making the perfect roast beef is easy with these handy tips for perfect roast beef.
Choosing the Beef
The best joints for roast beef are a Rib of Beef, Sirloin or Fillet. Rib works well as usually it will be cooked on the bone. Keeping the bone in makes for a tastier piece of beef when cooked but both Sirloin and Fillet are very good.
The beef should be:
Dark in color - meaning it has been hung well and mature, a thick covering of fat which adds flavor and prevents the joint from drying out during cooking.
Marbled. Marbling is small slivers of fat running through the flesh. Again this adds flavor and prevents drying out during cooking.
How Much to Buy
5 ½ lb bone in will feed 6
3 lb boned will feed 6
Don't worry about buying too much. Cold roast beef makes great sandwiches or added to a plate of cold cuts.
There are varying opinions about what the perfect temperature to cook a roast beef but in my experience starting the beef in a very hot oven 425F for the first 30 minutes then lower the temperature to 375F for the remaining cooking time.
How long to cook beef depends on your preference for how 'pink' or not you like to eat beef.
Calculate it this way, Rare 11 minutes per lb, Medium 14 minutes per lb and Well done 16 minutes per lb.
How to Cook
The beef should be at room temperature. Stand the beef joint in a roasting tin then cook to the temperature and time as above.
Rest, Rest, Rest
An important part of cooking any meat is once it is removed from the oven the meat must rest. Wrap the meat loosely in aluminum foil and put to one side. The fibers in meat tighten up during cooking and resting allows the fibers to relax, release some of the meat juices (great for the gravy) and results in a soft tender piece of meat. 20 minutes should be long enough but up to an hour won't do any harm. The joint is then ready to carve.
This Yorkshire Pudding recipe, is simple and guarantees success. A tray of Yorkshire Puddings fresh from the oven should be well-risen, golden brown with a crisp exterior and soft middle.
4 large, fresh eggs, measured in a jug
Equal quantity of milk to eggs
Equal quantity of all purpose/plain flour to eggs
Pinch of salt
2 tbsp lard, beef dripping or vegetable oil
Heat the oven to the highest temperature possible, however, do not exceed 450F/ or the fat may burn.
Pour the eggs and milk into a large mixing bowl and add the pinch of salt. Whisk thoroughly with an electric hand beater or hand whisk. Leave to stand for 10 minutes.
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