Monday, March 14, 2016

Bottom Round Roast



It sounds dangerous, doesn't it? Bottom round. Things that are at the bottom are usually not the best. And that's actually accurate. Bottom describes the location of this cut. And it's the tough guy of roasts. For that reason it's also very economical compared to other cuts of beef.

I bought one recently, and checked out some recipes, most of which said to sear it and toss it in the crock pot. I didn't sear it but I did toss it into the crock pot. On the bright side, it shredded like pulled pork and was definitely edible. Even better, I had poured in enough water to cover it and added carrots. The resulting liquid was an absolutely delicious beef broth that is now in my freezer waiting to be used.

As though the folks at Cook's Country magazine knew I was confused by this particular cut, they sent a new edition with a recipe for, you guessed it, Bottom Round Roast Beef. And I had just bought another one. Perfect timing.

Now, in all honesty, this is more about timing and treatment than it is a recipe. Cook's was kind enough to include a Zip-Style Sauce, but I found I didn't even need it. After all, you can make any kind of sauce you like. The crucial thing here is the temperature and a couple of little tricks that result in a mighty fine roast!

They suggested using fresh rosemary and fresh thyme. It's March and the garden is still slumbering, so I used dried thyme and, since I didn't have rosemary, I substituted marjoram, which turned out fabulous. The scent from the roasting meat was wonderful and the flavor was terrific.

It does have to be sliced against the grain, which was a little confusing. You'd think it would be so obvious. Do other people have discussions about which way the grain runs or is it just us? And it must be cut very, very thin.

In Cook's recipe, they call for salting the meat, wrapping it in plastic overnight and refrigerating 1 to 24 hours. I didn't see the reason for that in the article. Maybe it's something everyone else knows? I assumed it was a method of brining so I skipped that step entirely.

Before starting this, note that this is another recipe where you need a good temperature probe.

Will this be my go-to roast beef? Probably not for fancy dinners, but I will definitely be making it again. And while I know most of your dogs eat dog food, it did occur to me that it's such a nice lean cut that it would be great for doggie birthday parties and celebrations.


Bottom Round Roast Beef
(from Cook's Country April/May 2016)

1 4-pound boneless beef bottom roast
salt and pepper (to taste, I used about 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper)
olive oil
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons dried marjoram or dried rosemary

Preheat the oven to 250.

Combine the salt, pepper, thyme, and marjoram in a small bowl. Wash the beef and dry it. Rub all over with olive oil. Sprinkle the herb mixture over the beef and rub it in. Place the roast on a wire rack in a rimmed baking sheet.

1.  Roast 1 3/4 hours to 2 1/4 hours until center reaches 120 degrees.
2.  Turn off oven and leave roast inside 20 to 30 minutes until center reaches 135 degrees.
3.  Remove roast from oven, tent with foil, and allow to rest 30 minutes.

Slice thin to serve.


Rub with olive oil and herbs.
Tent and let rest.

Be sure to slice thin!




17 comments:

  1. It's beautiful K, even though I don't eat a whole lot of beef. I'd be very interested in the broth though. I bet you could make a nice homemade low sodium chicken broth in a crockpot too! Anybody tried that?

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    1. Lucy, I haven't made chicken broth in a crock pot but I always make it without salt. It tastes pretty boring until the salt is added, but that way I can control the amount of salt and whether I want to salt it at all.

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    2. I've done whole chickens in the crockpot and the resulting broth is great!



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  2. I've always stayed away from bottom roast because of the toughness. This sounds promising, though. Thanks!

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    1. Me, too, Connie! But this turned out better than I expected.

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  3. Woof, woof! Reg says thank you for suggesting this for doggie birthday parties! He thinks his owners would like it, too.

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    1. Reg is so smart! I also thought both dogs and their humans would like it!

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  4. When I was growing up, standing rib roast was our Sunday/company staple. I confess I've always been afraid to cook one, both because I'd need a second mortgage to pay for it, and because I'm afraid of overcooking it into a tough grey mess. If your pictures are accurate, this looks gorgeous, so I may give it a try.

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    1. Well, it can't really compete with a standing rib roast, but you won't have to mortgage the house to buy a bottom round roast. And if your grocery stores are like mine, you can't get a standing rib roast. They have to be special ordered after the mortgage is approved.

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  5. Putting salt on meat and leaving it overnight allows the juices to come to the surface and then retreat into the meat, taking the salt with them. This is supposed to make the meat more evenly seasoned and juicy.

    I'm with you about the "cutting against the grain" confusion.

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    1. It worked! Yay!

      I figured it was something like that, Libby. But it's every bit as good without that step!

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  6. Pat (patdupuy@yahoo.com)March 14, 2016 at 1:40 PM

    Looks delicious. I'm not sure I would know meat grain if I saw it. Invariably I would do the opposite.

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    1. LOL! We tried a few different angles and settled on the one that seemed the best.

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  7. Thanks for the recipe, Krista! I love ATK and CC, but no longer get the magazine. I'll definitely be trying this. I agree that changing around the sauce and seasonings can really be fun to try on different cuts of beef. :-) Side note on the above comment by Sheila - I have half a rib roast in my freezer (bought an extra large one for the holidays, and decided only to cook half), and I'm afraid to cook it because it was so darned expensive, lol! :-)

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    1. Oh Nicole! I can certainly relate-but don't let the ice gremlins get that wonderful meat! Hope you like this as much as we do. I was surprised by the results.

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  8. Some of the comments are very funny!

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  9. That looks very good thanks
    Penney

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