As I mentioned in the title of this post, roast beef is not something you think about when you envision Caribbean cuisine. Yes, I’m sure there are many homes on the islands where it’s common to have roast beef. But from my experience, our classic beef dishes includes, stewed beef and an assortment of soups. And how could one forget the occasional grilled steak. My love affair for roast beef started many years ago when we went out to the Rainforest Cafe for dinner. I still “fondly” remember that pile of garlic mashed potatoes, topped with a good serving of roast beef and rich gravy. The beef was very tender and fell apart with the slightest movement of your fork. I’m getting myself hungry, so let’s skip directly to the recipe…
3-4 lbs sirloin tip (beef)
2 cups beef broth
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 onion diced
2-3 sprigs of thyme
Rinse the beef under cool water, then pat dry. I then place it into a large enough roasting pan (one with a cover works best, but you can use one that’s covered with aluminum foil) while I dice the onions. Preset your oven to 375 degrees in the meantime.
Dice the onions into small pieces, then add it to the roasting pan. Toss in the thyme and black pepper, then pour in the beef broth.
Your oven should be up to temperature by now. Place on the middle rack (covered) and allow to slowly cook away for about 2.5 hours. Yes, this is roast beef that’s well done, so if you’re into slices of pink beef you’re out of luck. During this baking time, baste with the broth or flip the beef so it cooks evenly on both sides. With the beef broth we added, you’re almost oven braising the beef, so it will be very tender when complete.
After 2 – 2.5 hours I spoon out most of the liquid in the pan to use in making a gravy (so keep it in a small pot) and I place the pan back into the oven for another 20 minutes or so uncovered. This will dry up the meat a bit, but it will also give it a rich colour. After this cooking process, I remove the pan from the oven, place the lid back onto it and allow the meat to rest at room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving. This is usually when I make my gravy.
You’re probably wondering how to make the gravy. Well there are two sort of “cheat” methods I use. The most common being… I have a prepackaged roast gravy I get at the grocery store that’s a hit at home. I find that by using the drippings from the roast (that I removed during the cooking process) it adds a personal touch to the store bought gravy. The 2nd method I sometimes use is.. I use the same roast drippings I took out earlier and I add some corn starch (about 1/2 teaspoon mixed with 2 tablespoons water) to the pot and this thickens it up into a nice gravy. But do season accordingly if necessary.
There’s no slicing this roast, as it will fall apart on you. I usually use 2 forks and rip it apart into lovely strands of tender beef.
* Remember to fish out the sprigs of thyme so it doesn’t get into your gravy, but feel free to use the pieces of cooked onions. It’s adds a great flavour and texture to the finished gravy.
* You’ll notice that I didn’t add any salt to this recipe. This is a personal choice, as most beef broth comes loaded with sodium and I don’t really care for much salt.
Give this one a try, it’s simple and very tasty and a nice break from our traditional ways of preparing beef on the islands. Before you go, do leave me your comments below (it’s always appreciated) and do connect with us on Facebook. Click on the image below to get started.