Christmas is the ideal time to enjoy the company of friends and family and indulge in the delicious flavours of a succulent beef roast. Offering an original alternative to the standard turkey or Christmas ham, beef roasts are succulent, versatile and can be matched with a range of flavour profiles and accompaniments.
Cooking a juicy beef roast is so easy! Follow these simple steps below, guaranteed to create a delicious meal that will add that ‘wow factor’ to your festive meal with family and friends.
The first and most important step in cooking a beef roast is to choose a cut. There are so many different varieties to choose from depending on your preference and budget. For an economical cut with a great beef flavour, choose a bolar blade or topside. For a tender and tasty meal go with a rib eye/scotch fillet. To really impress, choose a standing rib roast, or, for a great all rounder, you can’t go past a beef rump.
- It’s important to ensure that you roast the beef from room temperature. To ensure the beef cooks evenly, remove it from the fridge 20 minutes before cooking.
Pre-heat the oven to suit your beef roast cut. Different cuts require different cooking temperatures. For the bolar blade cut, cook the beef at 160°C. For the rib eye/scotch fillet, rib roast or rump, cook at 200°C.
- Beef roasts that are cooked at 160°C (such as the bolar blade) benefit from pre-browning before roasting, as does the rib eye/scotch fillet. Lightly oil the beef and pan sear it over a moderately high heat for 2-3 minutes on all sides. Season it after browning with salt and pepper. For other cuts that don’t need pre-browning, pat the beef roast dry with a paper towel to help the meat absorb the seasoning. Rub it lightly with oil and season with salt and ground pepper.
Place the beef roast in the oven on a rack inside a roasting dish that is close to the size of your roast. A roasting dish that is too large will often result in pan juices burning on the large surface area as it cooks.
Roast on a rack to allow heat to circulate around the dish, browning it evenly. Note: standing rib roasts have a natural arc of the bones so they don’t need to be raised.
Don’t forget to baste the roast 2-3 times throughout the cooking process using juices from the roasting dish.
Depending on the degree of doneness you prefer, rare will need to be cooked for 20 minutes per 500g; medium for 25 minutes per 500g and well done for 30 minutes per 500g.
- You can test for doneness using tongs or a meat thermometer. When using tongs, gently squeeze the beef roast. Rare will feel soft, medium is springy and well done is firm. When using a meat thermometer, the internal temperature of the beef when cooked for rare is 55-60°C; medium is 65-70°C and well done is 75°C.
- Rest the beef roast for 10-20 minutes after cooking. This gives the juices in the meat a chance to redistribute, resulting in a succulent roast.
- Serve with roasted vegetables and gravy.