Friday, December 10, 2010


Roast beef or roast pork, that is. I have adapted a family recipe to be a bit more flavorful. Feel free to experiment a bit and let me know what works well for you! The roast can be prepared and refrigerated a day in advance of the final baking.

Beef Roast (top sirloin roast is the cheapest) or Pork Roast, two+ pounds (smaller tends to dry out)
Ground pepper, fresh is best but okay to use pre-ground
Package of onion soup mix, best to use low-sodium version. If you don’t have onion soup available, use salt but sparingly
Olive oil
Ginger, at least one inch long sliced into 1/8th inch – slicing the long way
2+ Onions, roughly chopped – don’t mince, if you love onions use more
2+ Garlic Cloves, chopped finely – its okay to use pre-chopped, too
1-cup hot water

Safe preparation of raw meat is essential. Make certain that you have thoroughly washed your hands, utensils and any area that you use to prepare the meat. Anything that touches raw or partially cooked meat must be washed with soap and water. Do not cross-contaminate with the other ingredients, even if you plan to add them later. Otherwise, you risk nasty gastro-intestinal retaliation (food poisoning is no fun).

Assemble the ingredients. Pre chop the ginger, onions, and garlic. Warm the water, as it will be used later. Select a large oven cooking pot. If you can use it on the stovetop, that is even better.

Pour a couple tablespoons of olive oil into a large pan (or the large oven cooking pot) on the top of the stove; turn the heat on low to start heating the oil. Tenderize roast with a meat mallet as much as you are able, it loosens up the outer layer to absorb flavor. I usually pound it in a clean sink with a layer of saran plastic wrap on top to reduce splatter. Do not remove the fat; it adds a lot of flavor. Rub at least a teaspoon of ground pepper onto each side of the roast. If you really love pepper, you can go up to a tablespoon. Rub half the package of onion soup mix onto the sides of the roast, about a teaspoon per side (reserve the remainder of the package until later).

Take the roast and place it into the pan with the olive oil. Wash your hands. Raise the temperature of the pan to medium and brown each side of the roast for about a minute. You are not cooking the roast, just searing the sides to keep the moisture in the roast while it cooks. After all the sides have been seared, turn off the heat and remove from the burner, it is okay for the roast to cool for a few minutes while you prepare the pot for baking.

If you were able to use the large oven cooking pot to sear the roast, gently remove the roast to a clean plate (it will leak a bit so that is why I don’t put it on a cutting board). Otherwise, just let it stay in the large pan. Place the roast in the refrigerator if you will take more than fifteen minutes to prepare, it is better to be safe than let microbes grow. Once the roast has cooled, turn the roast so the fat side is on top. Cut small holes in fat layer to create many pouches. Stuff the sliced ginger into the pouches all over the top of the roast. You may need to cut the ginger into smaller strips, depending upon the size of the pouch. Try to keep the pouches nearly horizontal with the fat layer. Wash your hands and anything that touched the raw or seared meat. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

In the large oven cooking pot, place a cooking rack on the bottom, it elevates the roast and prevents it from burning on the bottom of the pot. Place almost all the onions on the bottom of the pot. Pick up the roast and place it fat side up in the pot on top of the roasting rack and onions. The onions may bunch up on the side of the pot and that is okay. Wash your hands. If you used a large pan to sear the roast, scrape up all the drippings on the bottom of the pan and drop them onto top of the roast. Use the water to remove any remaining drippings and pour into the pot (not on top of the roast or it will wash off the ginger. Otherwise, just pour the hot water in the bottom of the pot.

Mix the remainder of the onion soup mix with the garlic, pour on top of the roast and gently smear it over the area where the ginger slices are inserted. Be careful to not remove the ginger slices. Wash your hands. Drop the remaining onions on top of the garlic mixture. Do not cover the pot but place it into the preheated oven. The general guideline is 15 minutes per pound for medium-raw. I prefer the roast to be medium so up the time to 20 minutes per pound, longer if you want it well done. Cook thoroughly and let it rest for a few minutes before you cut into it or the juices will leak out.

Enjoy! I prefer “au jus.” Add some sautéed mushrooms to the broth on the bottom of the pot and a bit of Worcestershire sauce. Otherwise, you can strain out the onions/garlic/ginger to serve on the side, and use the broth to create gravy.

Eat well.
© 2010

No comments: