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Five Ways to Cook Beef

Roasted or grilled, braised or sautéed, beef can be cooked in several different—and delicious—ways. Here are five of the easiest methods.


1. Roast Beef

For some, roast beef brings back fond childhood memories of family around the dinner table. For others, it’s a new tradition to gather around a juicy, flavourful roast on the weekend or special occasions. Here’s how to prepare this hearty classic.

 

General technique

  • Sear all sides of beef.
  • Always place the roast fat side up in the roasting pan.
  • Season with herbs.
  • Do not add liquids or salt.
  • Cook in the oven, uncovered as per your recipe. For tender beef, roast at 160°C (320°F).

Once the beef has reached the desired internal temperature, remove it from the oven and cover loosely with aluminum foil. Let it rest for about ten minutes to allow the juices to circulate and the fibres to relax. This will make your beef more juicy and flavourful!

 

For round, sirloin tip, rump, eye of round, inside and outside round, French roasts and bottom sirloin roasts

  • Add a little liquid before cooking, then place uncovered in a 260°C (500°F) oven for 30 minutes.
  • Lower the temperature to 140°C (285°F) and continue cooking until the meat thermometer indicates 70°C (160°F).

 

Flap steak (Bavette)

Did you know there is a specific way to slice cooked flap steak? To preserve all its tenderness, it should be sliced crosswise.

  • Marinate the flap steak for 6 to 12 hours in a mixture of red wine, Dijon mustard, olive oil, freshly ground pepper and thyme.
  • Remove the beef from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels.
  • Place on the rack of a roasting pan.
  • Place the pan in a 230°C (450°F) oven.
  • Cook for 10 to 12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the beef.
  • After cooking, remove from oven and cover loosely with aluminum foil, allowing heat to escape. Let stand for 5 to 8 minutes before serving. Serve with shallot sauce (recipe below).

 

Shallot Sauce

  • In a frying pan over medium heat, mix oil, butter and shallots and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Deglaze with red wine and reduce by half.
  • Add a bit of beef broth and continue cooking for 5 to 8 minutes.
  • If necessary, add a little cornstarch diluted with water to thicken.
  • Spoon the sauce over the flap steak.

 

Rib Roast

  • Heat oil in a roasting pan.
  • Brown onions and a sprig of rosemary.
  • Sear the beef on both sides.
  • Sprinkle a mixture of dried mustard and flour (one part mustard to two parts flour) on the beef. Add some beef consommé to the pan.
  • Place in a pre-heated oven at 180°C (350°F).
  • Baste the roast with its own juices from time to time to prevent it from drying out.
  • Toward the end of the cooking period, insert a meat thermometer in the thickest part of the roast, away from bone and fat.
  • Once the roast has reached the desired internal temperature, remove from the oven and cover loosely with aluminum foil, allowing steam to escape. Let stand for about 15 minutes before serving.

 

Roasted fillet of beef

  • Trim the fillet.
  • Brown onions and herbs in a lightly oiled roasting pan.
  • Sear the fillet on all sides.
  • Sprinkle a mixture of dry mustard and flour (one part mustard to two parts flour) on the fillet. Add some beef consommé to the pan.
  • Place in a pre-heated 180°C (350°F) oven and roast until meat has reached the internal temperature you want. (See below for tips on internal temperatures and doneness.)
  • Baste the fillet often with its own juices to prevent it from drying out.
  • For a fillet weighing 1.4 kilos (3 pounds), cook for about 25 minutes at 180°C (350°F), at which point it will be rare.
  • Remove from oven and wrap loosely in aluminum foil, allowing steam to escape.
  • Let stand for 8 to 10 minutes before serving.

 

2. Grilled Beef

Tender marbled cuts of beef, such as ribs, cutlets, slices of fillet, rib-eye, porterhouse, strip loin and sirloin, are excellent on the barbecue. These cuts should be quickly seared to protect their juices and to keep them tender. Tenderized or marinated cuts are best cooked in the oven.

  • If there is fat around the steak, score the fat before cooking to prevent the steak from curling on the barbecue.
  • Heat oven to medium, 180°C (350°F), or pre-heat the barbecue.
  • Turn meat with tongs once halfway through cooking to avoid piercing the meat and losing the juices.
  • Basting is recommended when barbecuing the following cuts: eye of round, outside round, sirloin tip, top sirloin, bottom sirloin, blade, cross ribs, flank, flank steak and top blade.
  • Season with pepper and garlic, if desired, but only after you have seared the beef on both sides. Otherwise the seasonings will burn and turn bitter, masking the taste of the beef.

 

Kebabs

  • Thread alternate cubes of beef and vegetables onto skewers.
  • Make sure the vegetables are cut to the same size as the beef cubes.
  • Leave a little space between each piece to ensure even cooking.
  • Grill each skewer for about 5 minutes.

 

3. Braised Beef

This slow, gentle method of cooking makes for a welcoming aroma that wafts through the house. Braising is ideal for cross rib roasts or steak, bottom blade, shoulder, short ribs, as well as round, sirloin tip, and outside round steaks. A de-boned, rolled cut of beef will take about 2½ hours per kilo (1 1/4 hours per pound) in a 160°C (325°F) oven.

  • In a large, lightly oiled casserole, brown the meat on all sides to preserve the juices and enhance the flavour.
  • Add enough liquid to cover one quarter of the beef. The liquid can be wine, broth or a mixture of both. The liquid should be cold rather than hot to prevent the meat's juices from combining with the liquid.
  • Add aromatic vegetables such as onions, leeks and carrots, plus a bouquet garni.
  • Cover and place in a 160°C (325°F) oven until the meat is tender.
  • Season with salt and pepper once the meat is cooked.

 

4. Beef Sauces and Stews

This slow-cooking method lends itself to less tender cuts of beef such as cross rib roast or steaks, bottom blade, shoulder, short ribs, blade or round steaks, sirloin tip or outside round.

  • Coat the beef with a mixture of flour, salt and pepper. In a large, lightly oiled casserole, brown meat on all sides.
  • Add onions or aromatic vegetables of your choice and mix well.
  • Add enough liquid to cover the beef.
  • Cover and place in a 160°C (325°F) oven for about 1½ hours.
  • Add chopped vegetables such as potatoes, carrots and mushrooms 30 minutes before the stew is ready.

 

5. Sautéed Beef

Sautéing is great for sirloin, marinated beef, round, sirloin tip or flank.

  • If using sirloin, prepare a dry marinade to enhance its flavour.
  • Other cuts (round or sirloin tip) should be marinated in liquid for 30 minutes to 2 hours before cooking.

 

Sautéed beef with vegetables

  • Quickly sear strips, cubes or steaks in a lightly oiled pan or wok for 2 to 3 minutes at medium heat. Set aside.
  • Sauté the vegetables and return the beef to the pan a few minutes before cooking is complete.

 

How to know when cooked beef is done

 

For Rare Beef

The beef will yield slightly to the touch. When cut, it should be red on the inside and firm in consistency. The internal temperature should be about 63°C (145°F).

 

For Medium Beef

The meat should be firm to the touch. When cut, its interior should be pink, with very firm consistency. The internal temperature should be about 71°C (160°F).

 

For Well-Done Beef

The meat should be greyish when cut, with a very firm consistency and an internal temperature of about 77°C (170°F).

 

For Ground Beef

Ground beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 71ºC (160ºF).


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