How long does it take to cook roast beef ?
Who doesn’t love a roast dinner with all the trimmings? It’s a firm favourite with many people but they often struggle to know how to chose and cook a joint of meat. So I thought I’d run a series of articles over the next few months, to help you make a terrific Sunday dinner. And first up this month is beef.
Which joint to chose?
In my opinion rib of beef is the best beef joint. It’s marbled with fat which melts as the meat cooks and helps to keep the meat really tender and moist. It also has a superb flavour. However it is expensive so the next best is topside. This is a leaner meat so can dry out if you overcook it. Make sure you baste it regularly with the cooking juices. Silverside is also available and is a cheaper cut but I find it can be quite dry. I tend to use it for a pot roast where the meat is cooked slowly until tender.
How long to cook it for?
Two things to think about here, how rare do you like your meat and how much does the meat weigh? So first of all weigh the joint If you like your meat quite rare allow 15 minutes to the half kilo plus 15 minutes. For medium rare, 20 minutes to the half kilo plus 15 minutes and for well done, 25 minutes to the half kilo plus 15 minutes. So say your meat weighed 1.5kg and you like it medium rare, this means it will be cooked around the outside but with a pink centre.
You need to cook it for 3x20 minutes plus another 15 minutes, which is a total of 75 minutes or 1 hour 15 minutes. Cook at a high temperature first (220C) for 15 mins then turn down to 180C for the rest of the cooking time. Resting the meat is important as it allows the meat juices to sink back into the meat. This makes the meat more tender and easier to carve. Take the tray out of the oven at least 20 minutes before you’re ready to carve and wrap it in foil to keep warm.
How do you carve meat?
Place the joint on a stable chopping board. Use a sharp knife and cut across the grain of the meat in thin slices. Where should I buy my meat? Make friends with your local butcher. Not only are you supporting a local business but they will be able to give you lots of help and advice about buying and choosing meat.