Sunday, 15 January 2012

Perfect Roast Beef and how Mario Batali is my new bestie

I am not the 'meat and patadoes' eater that Big Daddy or my stepdad are but I LERV a good roast beef on occasion.  Roast to a perfect medium rare and served au jus with hot horseradish.

For a family event over the holidays I had reason to make not one but two roasts for an evening with a large group.  Parties with large groups can be stressful at the best of times so I love the fact that this can be done earlier in the day and be left in the oven for hours while you get all the other little stuff done.

Now because I refused to buy garbage hormone antibiotic filled meat, I usually have to compromise on cut of meat because of sheer price.  I, regrettably, forget the exact cut of these roasts but I will tell you that they aren't fancy at all. They were a round roast or something similar but they were not a POT roast.  I always try to get roasts with a lot of fat marbled through the roast.  The more fat the harder it is to fuck it up, the more flavourful and tender the meat.  Don't think that you need to spend a million dollars to have a beautiful roast.

This is what I did....this time.

Preheat oven 200-225 degrees
One thing you are going to need is a really good meat thermometer.

I rubbed the outside of the roast with a really good dijon mustard and salt and peppered it well.  I like using a slightly coarser salt, not table salt and not pickling salt but one that you can find that is in between.Then I tucked stocks of rosemary in and around the roast
*tip - If you can't find a medium grind salt buy a coarse salt and grind it up in your mortar and pestle until it is the consistency you are looking for.


The reason for cooking it at such a low heat is to render the fat and gently cook it but to not cook it too quickly.  This keeps it tender. At a higher temperature the outside is going to heat and cook first before the inside even gets warm so often the outside is well done while in the inside is still bloody.  At the lower heat no part of it cooks too fast or overcooks and if you monitor the temperature well you can have a roast that is cooked the way you like from side to side, end to end.  I try to check the internal temperature every 30 mins (ish) after the first 2 hours.

Another thing that people tend to forget is to let the roast rest.  And the roast will continue to cook while it is resting so it is important to remove the roast from the oven when it is somewhere from 5-10 degrees LESS than you want it to be cooked.

Here are the internal temperatures for the different levels of doneness.  Once you remove the roast, cover it with tin foil and leave it for 10 minutes before carving.  This allows the juices that have all collected near the surface of the meat to redistribute and for it to finish cooking.

                                                  Rare                Medium Rare         Medium              Medium-Well

Beef Roast        
120º
125º        
130º
135º
        140º
145º       
150º
155º

Then enjoy -
Mine is a perfect medium rare

Now I don't think I need to point out the series of small holes through the surface of the meat.  I had NEVER seen this before and started to panic....so I did what any average amateur 'chef' does....tweeted an expert.  Yes I tweeted Chef Mario Batali the same picture.....wouldn't you??  And very quickly I got a response...from the chef himself!! Cause that's how I roll Bee-atches....This is the response I got

"@lifeastudy Never seen this hmmm. Call store and ask"

Geez thanks Chef.......

Other Mario Batali Twitter followers were quick to answer my question

"@Mariobatali @LifeaStudy mechanically tenderized. Ive seen this done on less desirable cuts sold as something else."

"That's fm a blade tenderizer RT @Mariobatali @LifeaStudy"

 "@Mariobatali @LifeaStudy Jaccarding gone crazy?"

 "@Mariobatali @LifeaStudy looks tenderized to me."

Besides getting my answer, deciding on changing butchers and knowing that the roast was edible and not full of now slowly roasted over a low heat worms, I finally realized the allure of Twitter!  A friend once recommended Hoot Suite to manage all my fab hawt social media skillz but I found it all soooo overwhelmingly eye rolling but with her advice ringing through my head (xo Selena) I decided to make a go of it and now I am tweeting through Hoot Suite....which makes me wonder....does that mean I am 'Tooting'??

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