Jamie Oliver

forum: Food & Drink

Subscribe to forums RSS

#1 Thu 10 Jul 08 10:08pm

Steve Wright

Member
Occupation IT Project Manager
From Nottingham
Member since Wed 31 Aug 05

Perfect Roast Beef

I love Roast beef but never seem to get it nice and tender, always is a bit chewy.

Any suggestions would be welcome

    Likes (0)

#2 Thu 10 Jul 08 10:17pm

TheBeast2

Forum champ
Member since Fri 31 Aug 07

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

Tell us your method and the cut of beef.

Cheaper cuts have a lot of collagen, or connective tissue, because they come from parts of the animal that move a lot, so obviously those muscles need to be strong and stable. More expensive cuts, obviously, have little collagen.

Collagen melts into geletin above 60C, as the coiled molecular strands unravel. However, the protein fibrils contained within the muscle fibres contract above 60C as well, like wringing out a wet towel, so without careful cooking, one can have either tough collagen or tough meat.

Place the beef in a cold oven (if it is a cheap cut) and bring the temperature of the meat slowly up to 55C. It's a rather simplistic method, but good enough for a domestic kitchen, and it should work.

N.B. One method I have been taught is to fry the meat to seal it (this is absolute bullshit), place it in a very hot oven for 10 minutes, then lower the temperature to hot. I don't understand the logic behind this, and I wouldn't recommend it.

    Likes (0)

#3 Thu 10 Jul 08 10:32pm

Steve Wright

Member
Occupation IT Project Manager
From Nottingham
Member since Wed 31 Aug 05

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

TheBeast, thanks, We have tried various cuts, and even tenderising in Gravy to no avail.

55C is that 130F ?

I guess at that temperature we are slow roasting so would be looking at approximately 2 to 2.5 hours ?

    Likes (0)

#4 Thu 10 Jul 08 10:48pm

TheBeast2

Forum champ
Member since Fri 31 Aug 07

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

That would be about right.

About 2.5 hours, starting in a cold oven.

    Likes (0)

#5 Sat 02 Aug 08 3:55pm

JAOB

Member
Member since Sat 02 Aug 08

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

Do you actually put the roast on the oven rack without a pan?  I'm going to try this but how much clean-up is there afterward?

    Likes (0)

#6 Sat 02 Aug 08 4:08pm

MsPablo

Forum super champ
Occupation Just being me
Member since Fri 28 Mar 08

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

I always make pot roast for fear of ruining an expensive rib roast or whole beef tenderloin.  For pot roast, I use a chuck blade roast, bone in if possible, brown it, remove it from the pan, drain off the fat, add some olive oil, sautee onions, carrots, garlic, add some tomato product, wine and water,  then braise covered in a low temperature oven for 3 hours.

Can someone give me a tried and true method for cooking a rib roast and one for cooking a whole tenderloin?

    Likes (0)

#7 Sun 03 Aug 08 12:11am

Pete

Forum champ
From The Office
Member since Tue 18 May 04

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

First off Steve you need a decent piece of beef.. rib-eye is nice but quite expensive, sirloin is a little less tender, but has a great flavour, but its still expensive.. Topside is more economical and perfectly tasty, but not as easy to get right.. what you definately don't want to be cooking is silverside.. it is tough as old boots and only really fit for salting or mincing.

This'll work for a roasting joint of say 2 to 4 kg..
Get your meat to room temperature, rub it all over with a little oil, and plenty of salt and pepper. Place it in a very hot oven, shut the door, and turn it down to 200 C.

After ten or fifteen minutes, some of the fat will start rendering out of the meat and collecting in the roasting tray. Open the oven door, pull the tray half way out and spoon the juices over the meat, basting it like this helps keep your roast moist and encourage a good dark caramel crust on the outside. Keep doing this every 15 minutes or so as it cooks, make sure you're quick though, so the oven doesnt lose all its heat while you have the door open.

When you think your meat is done, this will depend on how big a piece it is and how you like it cooked, push a clean skewer right into the middle and count to 5. Pull it out and hold it against your top lip. If it's too hot to hold there, your roast is well done, (that may or may not be a good thing!) if it's warm but not hot, it should be nice and pink, if it's still cold, put the meat back in for a little longer.

Take the meat out if it's at the stage you want it to be.. place it on a plate to rest covered loosely with foil. This gives the meat fibres a chance to relax, and then they're easier to carve. Your roast will be fine like this for about half an hour or so, while you get the rest of your bits and pieces together..

That method of roasting beef Beast2 describes is a new style of cooking pioneered by chefs like Heston Blumethal of the Fat Duck. HB does things like show scientifically that bass is perfectly cooked or beef is perfectly medium rare at X degrees centigrade, so then he cooks pieces of fish in a hospital water bath used for sterilising instruments, because it has a very accurate temperature control. He can then set it to x degrees and then be sure it is perfectly cooked.

Fortunately fillets of fish don't take long to reach that temperature, joints of beef do, however, so he does this mad 12 hour roast dish, where it takes that long to come up uniformley to the desired low temperature. Then he quickly blow torches it or grills it on a hot griddle to caramelise the outside. When you cut it you get a very perfect thin crust and a perfectly uniform pink meat inside.

Heston B knows what he's doing, and he is an interesting guy, some of his methods are very very clever, but I think the food at the end lacks heart and soul. I LIKE the way roast beef has crispy nuggets on the outside, and a melting centre of dark pink.. I LIKE the way you can baste it with the juices as it roasts so they caramelise on the surface of the meat and taste amazing! I LIKE the way you make gravy with the veg in the bottom of the roasting dish! These things mean much more to me than a uniformly pink slice with a neat poncey brown colour round the edge..I just dont think it's real cooking, its playing with food. You might as well poach it, then paint it with Marmite like food stylists did in the 80's!..

I've eaten in excess of 60 courses at the fat duck, and out of both visits, the thing that really wowed me, the thing i thought was amazing... was the bread and butter! Sorry Heston.. wink

    Likes (0)

#8 Sun 03 Aug 08 12:42am

TheBeast2

Forum champ
Member since Fri 31 Aug 07

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

Was it quenelled butter that provided a neon light show and was flavoured with cockerels combs or something extravagent?

    Likes (0)

#9 Sun 03 Aug 08 12:44am

Pete

Forum champ
From The Office
Member since Tue 18 May 04

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

lol  no, just really good sourdough made to a very old recipe he'd found, served with the very best French farmhouse butter.. worth going back for!

...and to be fair, the tobacco chocolates were very good too.

    Likes (0)

#10 Sun 03 Aug 08 12:45am

TheBeast2

Forum champ
Member since Fri 31 Aug 07

Re: Perfect Roast Beef

Oh.

Guess you didn't go as recently as I did

cool

Seriously, I'd give my brother's left nut to eat there, and his right one to work there.

Not my own, of course; that would be silly.

    Likes (0)

Powered by PunBB.