The rich flavours of roasting

Roasts are large cuts that are cooked whole in the oven as opposed to being cut down into individual steaks or otherwise. Roasts are renowned for being a delectable yet easy meal as they can be prepared well in advance and left to cook without much attention.

An array of cuts are suitable for roasts, but as roasting is a dry heat cooking method, it is best to stick to moderately or very tender cuts. The more tender the cut, the less cooking time is required:

  • Tenderloin (very tender)
  • Rib and rib eye cuts (very tender)
  • Prime rib (very tender)
  • Strip loin (very tender)
  • Top sirloin (very tender)
  • Rump (tender)
  • Sirloin tip (tender)
  • Inside or outside round (less tender)
  • Eye of round (less tender)

Flavour Profile of Roasts

Roasts pack a palette punch as the cuts of beef used typically have good marbling, a reference to the fat that appears as white flecks and streaks in a marble pattern. Generally, marbling means great flavour.

The juices from the roast can also be used in a succulent sauce along with herbs, oils and aromatic vegetables to amp up taste even more.

Cooking a Roast

Some chefs recommend flouring and then searing a roast on all sides before putting it into a roasting tin. One tip is to put the roast directly on your oven rack with the tin underneath full of vegetables – this ensures even cooking and also provides you with a tasty side dish.

It’s recommended not to add liquids such as broth, wine or water to the roasting pan if you want to caramelize the meat and get the brown crust on it that characterizes restaurant-style roast beef.

Cook in a pre-heated oven around 320 to 350° F (check your recipe) and baste often with the juices from the roast to prevent it from drying out. Towards the end of the cooking period, check with a meat thermometer in the thickest part of the roast away from the bone and fat. Usually 130 to 160° F is a good indicator the roast is ready and tender (and remember that it will continue to cook after being removed from the oven). Cover it with loose tin foil and let it stand for fifteen or twenty minutes to allow the fibres to relax and the juice to reabsorb.

For more cooking ideas, check out our Recipes page.

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