Cold cuts. I love this stuff. Cold roast beef. Awesome. Top Sirloin makes a pretty damn good roast beef. Add sous vide into the equation. Super awesome. I’ve been meaning to do more sous vide cooking lately but I tend to get lazy.. the bag, the timing, this and that.. really all excuses. Cooking sous vide is extremely easy. This roast seemed like the perfect candidate for a nice, long and gentle cooking approach. I shouldn’t use the term roast, because really the meat was never roasted in the oven, but I will. Cast iron skillet did a pretty good job of searing the outside. The water bath did a pretty amazing job a cooking it medium rare evenly and even helping tenderize this cut a bit. It tends to be slightly chewier than the tenderloin. At least the one I got a the store. How do I know? I cut a small portion, pan seared it, tried it, it seemed a bit tough. Didn’t want the meat to turn to mush either, so I cooked it roughly for about 12-14 hours which did the trick.
In the photos, as I mentioned, the “roast” beef is cold out of the fridge, hence the peculiar dry appearance. But that’s because the collagen and the fats are in a solid estate. Apply a little heat from say, a panini press… unleash the juiciness One more thing I did was. I sliced the meat into about 3mm round, cut against the grain. Sprinkled it with salt and pepper, generously, and let it rest overnight in the fridge. The next day it was delicious, a bit on the saltier side, which is perfect in my opinion.
1 Fresh Top Sirloin Roast, about 3-4 pounds
1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
1/2 Tbsp Kosher Salt
1 Tbsp Brown Sugar
1/2 Tbsp garlic powder
1/2 Tbsp onion powder
1 Tbsp Chilli powder (chimayo chiles in my case, thanks Shanna)
To season the meat. Place it in a ziplock bag with all the ingredients. Seal the bag. Shake it really well until the meat is more evenly coated. You could place it in the fridge overnight, which I would recommend. I decided to cook it right away and let it cook and season/brine at the same time. The problem here is that as it cooks, the beef jus is pushing out as the muscle fibers tense up due to heat and the brine doesn’t really penetrate all that effectively or at least that’s what I think. The same could be said about overnight brining, the seasoning will leave the meat as the jus gets rendered when heat is applied. Not sure, I’d have to experiment more, but in my experience, seasoning/marinating/brining before cooking tends to work better. A solution to the issue mentioned above could be “post brining”. Cooking the meat with the seasonings right away and then letting it sit in the fridge overnight allowing the salt permeate back into the meat. Then sear it. Another experiment to add to my list.
One thing I did differently. I didn’t add any fat into the sous vide baggie. Fat actually prevents salt from penetrating the meat. Why? because salt it doesn’t dissolve in fat. Instead, it gets coated with the oils. No fat in the baggie. More efficient brining/marinating/seasoning. Anyways, Another comparison test would put this one to bed.
Searing the meat. Remove the bag from the sous vide bath. You could place the baggie in an ice bath. Or just let it rest in the fridge or counter for about 30 minutes. Remove meat from the bag and dry it with paper towels. Pour juices in a shallow pan and reserve. On a cast iron pan stainless steel pan over high heat, heat up some clarified butter or any good quality high smoke point oil such as light olive oil, canola, etc. When the oil starts to ripple and its barely just started to release a little smoke, carefully place the meat, and sear on all sides. Resist the temptation of cutting this thing up. Allow to rest for at least 30 minutes.
Heat up the pan containing the meat jus, and make a pan glaze, add some more sugar, tamari, garlic powder or fresh garlic, shallots. Boil and reduce. Strain half way there. Remove any solids, make sure to extract as much liquid from the solids as possible. Discard the solids. Return liquid to the pan. Taste. Adjust seasoning. Reduce until it is the consistency of a glaze. Allow to cool. Then using a pastry brush. Paint the roast beef evenly. Transfer to a dish and place in the fridge over night. The next day, you can slice the meat cold. Or heat up the meat in the oven or sous vide bath and enjoy a juicy and tender roast beef.
I’ve appended here a few photos I took when visiting Stanley Park, here in Vancouver this last weekend. Until the next post!