Tuesday, April 29, 2014

a fast roast beef

Roast Beef
Slow pot cooking, deep aromatic fumes, infused liquids is what characterizes roasted meats.  Usually when you think of roasts you think of winter food, lets transfer that thought of winter and make it spring, summer, whenever-you-want food by changing slow simmering to fast searing.

Today we are making a fast roast beef.

This roast beef requires some attention but in a few quick moves and with no sweat, it will be on the table in only 30 minutes.  I want to tempt you even more… all you need to do is roll the meat in a generous seasoning of fresh grounded Sichuan pepper and Himalayan pink salt. And just to say…what makes it better, are the leftovers, if any, that you will make sure to thinly slice and place in a fresh bun with some horseradish and lettuce for lunch the next day.  

Just to say. 
Roast Beef
First off, and bare with me because I know I repeat myself often, "good quality" meat is mandatory.  Good quality "everything" is mandatory, for goodness sake!

Lets get started.

Once you have a good cut of beef tenderloin, give it a few ties of string to keep the meat in shape and pat dry.  The pat dry step is important, don't skip it, or you'll steam the meat, which is what you don't want. Instead, you want to sear and caramelize to build flavor.

Coarsely grind some Sichuan pepper, without getting too much out of your way, just enough to break up the pepper and release the flavors.  Same thing with the Himalayan salt.  Spread the seasoning on a piece of wax paper and roll the meat back and forth, pressing it against the seasoning to completely cover the beef.  

Turn on the oven to 220ºC.

Meanwhile, you will have your cast iron skillet on high heat,  Once the pan is hot...very hot, add some extra virgin olive oil, enough to uniform the surface and a tad more. Place the meat in the pan and sear to a deep-brown color, give it a minute of time on each side (as if it has 4 edges). 

This is when someone walks in the kitchen to say...mmmh what's cookin'?? You are now inhaling the most wonderful aroma.   Keep tight, you're almost done.

You have seared the beef in 4 minutes.  Now place the whole pan in the oven.  Don't use non stick pans. Cast iron pans are always the best but if you don't have one, use a stainless steel pan that can be placed in the oven (without plastic handles).  

For medium rare, braise in the oven for 15 minutes at 220ºC or 20 minutes if you prefer it a little more cooked.  

The final touch is the quick sauce that goes with it and that's done in even less time because all you need to do is pour the wine and this is how...       

Remove the meat from the oven and place the beef on a rack over the pan, loosely cover with tin foil.  Let the meat sit for 5 minutes. The pan placed under the rack will gather some of the meat's juice.  Put the pan back on the stove and at a high heat pour some wine, more or less half a glass.  Let the liquid reduce as you scrape the meat residuals from the pan, it will quickly caramelize.  Pour the liquid through a sieve and serve as sauce. 


  1. totally agree.. good quality "everything" is mandatory!
    Love this post!!

    1. This reminds me that I have some good quality "ra-barbara" for you. :)