WEEKEND: Eating at Home: From Long Lazy Lunches to Fast Family Fixes by Matt Tebbutt (Quadrille, £22) Photography: Chris Terry
Roast Rib of Beef With Yorkshire Pudding, Onion Gravy And Chive And Black Pepper Butter
Sundays are made special with a rib of beef. For me, a rib is the perfect cut: a good amount of delicious fat, great marbled meat, bones you can chew – basically everything I want in a piece of meat
If you’re going to the expense and effort, make sure you visit a good butcher and tell them you want a well sourced, nicely hung piece of meat on the bone. Meat cooks much better on the bone, but if it comes wrapped in butcher’s string, I suggest you cut it off, because it seems to constrict the muscles too much and does nothing to help the end result.
- For the roast rib of beef
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1.5kg rib of beef
- 1 head of garlic, cut in half horizontally
- 1 small bunch of thyme
- 3½ tbsp Madeira wine
- 30g salted butter
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- For the Yorkshire pudding
- 500g plain flour
- 1 heaped tsp sea salt
- 500ml medium free-range eggs (this will be 5–6 eggs, depending on size)
- 500ml milk
- Vegetable oil/duck fat or goose fat, for cooking the Yorkshire puddings
- For the onion gravy
- 30g salted butter
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 4 onions, sliced
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- 500ml red wine
- 1½ litres beef stock
- For the chive and black pepper butter
- 150g salted butter, at room temperature
- 1 bunch chives, finely chopped
- 10–15g freshly cracked black pepper
- Right, let’s cook the beef. Season the beef well on both sides with salt and pepper – a few hours in advance if you can, otherwise not to worry. Get a large frying pan (skillet) scorching hot and add some oil (use a pan that is ovenproof). Put the beef flat-side down in the pan to colour, then turn over and do the same on the other side. This will take a good five–10 minutes on each side. Do the same with the fatty part of the meat, holding it down on the base of the hot pan to render the fat and make it crisp. Add the garlic and thyme to the pan with the beef and transfer it to the hot oven. Cook to your preference. It will take 40–45 minutes for medium rare; add about 10–12 minutes on for each desired level of ‘doneness’. When the pan comes out the oven, add the Madeira and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from the base of the pan, then whisk in the butter. Baste the meat in these juices, then let it rest, covered, for at least 30 minutes before slicing.
- Meanwhile, for the Yorkshire pudding, put a large roasting tin in the oven to heat up. You can use an individual bun tray, but I prefer one large single Yorkshire pudding, so it is crisp on the edges and soft in the middle. Put the flour and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the centre. Mix the eggs with the milk in a jug and pour slowly into the centre, whisking well to prevent lumps. If you do have lumps, just pass the mixture through a sieve (strainer) back into the bowl. Season with a bit more with salt and pepper, if you like. I’ve seen mustard and herbs and all sorts of tricks added to the batter at this point, but I don’t feel the need, personally. Let the batter stand and rest in the fridge for 30 minutes. This is important as it allows the gluten in the flour to rest. When ready to cook, pour about 5mm (¼in) of oil or fat into the roasting tin – use duck or goose fat if that’s your thing. Shut the oven door and heat the fat up for five–10 minutes. Now pour the batter in... it should immediately bubble and spit. This is perfect. Pour all the batter into the tin and quickly shut the oven door. Heat and speed are essential here. Now leave it alone (no opening the oven door) and watch it rise. Cook for 25–30 minutes, or until golden and risen. It’s a thing of beauty!
- To make the onion gravy, heat the butter and oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. When hot, add the onions and cook, stirring, for 20–30 minutes until they start to brown – the longer the better, to be honest. When you’re happy, add the flour and stir into the onions. Cook for two minutes. Pour in the wine and cook, stirring, to reduce by half. Finally, add the stock and cook to reduce by half again. Taste and season. Keep warm.
- You can make the chive and black pepper butter well ahead of time: put the ingredients in a bowl and mix well, retaining some chives to sprinkle over when serving, if you like. Roll into a log on a piece of baking paper, wrap and chill in the fridge to firm up.
- When everything is ready to serve, slice the rested beef and place on a warmed serving plate. If you made a single large Yorkshire pudding, cut it into pieces and place alongside. Serve with the onion gravy and slices of the chive and black pepper butter.
Extracted from WEEKEND: Eating at Home: From Long Lazy Lunches to Fast Family Fixes by Matt Tebbutt (Quadrille, £22) Photography: Chris Terry