An inexpensive cut of beef can be turned into a tender and tasty meal when you take time to cook it low and slow.
Take Your Time to Make This Beef
Uncle Smokey here to tell you about one of my favorite weekend recipes. It starts Friday morning before I head out to work – I take a chunk of beef (generally a London broil) out of the freezer to thaw.
Friday evening I add a rub or marinade to the beef and let it sit overnight (in the fridge) to develop the flavor. I tend to use just 2 or 3 herbs – simple flavors for my taste buds. Recently I have been using Mexican oregano, a bare touch of cinnamon, and a touch of onion powder. Don’t need lots of herbs – just a sprinkle because you are letting them soak into the meat. If I don’t like how it turned out there is always salsa or adobo sauce to mask the flavor.
Allow Beef to Warm
Saturday morning take the beef out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature before the next step – searing.
Sear the Beef
After Saturday lunch, sear your beef. This means allow an oiled pan to get nice and hot – then drop the room temp beef into the hot oil and allow the meat to sear. If you do this with a cold piece of beef you make it tougher not more tender!
Once seared on both sides – and the ends too if you are a purist – you are ready to cover and roast. 250 degrees until dinner, or about 4 o’clock in the afternoon if it just smells too dang good.
I use a cast iron Dutch oven, and there are enameled versions. I like this one pot way of cooking because I am not a fan of washing dishes. If you don’t have a Dutch oven, you can sear in a frying pan and transfer your meat into a glass baking dish, creating a cover out of foil.
What About Liquid?
The beef has moisture in it. Some of it escapes as you bake it. Since you have covered the beef, the moisture will be right there to make gravy out of. If you used a frying pan – don’t be in a rush to wash it. Use the liquid at the bottom of your cooking dish and heat it in that same frying pan and make your gravy. It’s called “deglazing” the pan and the hot seared juiciness makes a rich gravy.
Don’t Need No Gravy!
Because this cooks low and slow it generally just falls apart – as you can see in the picture. It is also generally more than juicy enough. This is great for tacos with fresh tortillas, or in a bowl with a “side” of steamed broccoli tossed atop. Great with eggs the next morning too, and for another few meals as well.
Editors Note: There is Some Science to Back This
The low temperatures help soften the meat, let the flavors develop, and prevent the gristle bits from becoming too tough. Pressure cookers, like the “Insta-pot” do not yield quite the same result as this more traditional oven roasting.
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