Roast beef with tarragon & chilli butter


3 x 15ml spoon fresh tarragon
800g shallots
50g unsalted butter
1 x 5ml spoon dried chilli flakes
1.3kg lean rump roast or topside joint
Black pepper
450ml hot water
1 beef stock cube
25g plain flour
150ml white wine


Knife, chopping board, weighing scales, measuring spoon, small bowl, mixing spoon, kitchen towel, roasting tin with rack, oven gloves, large plate, aluminium foil, kettle, measuring jug, whisk, sieve.


1. Preheat the oven to 180°C or Gas Mark 4.
2. Prepare the ingredients:
• finely chop the tarragon;
• peel the shallots.
3. Mix the butter, tarragon and chilli flakes together in a small bowl.
4. Place the beef on a chopping board, score the surface of the joint with a sharp knife, pat dry with kitchen towel, season with black pepper and rub the flavoured butter all over the joint.
5. Place the beef joint on a metal rack in a large roasting tin and roast for the preferred, calculated cooking time.
6. One hour before the end of the cooking time, remove the roast from the oven, put the beef on a plate and remove the rack from the tin.
7. Add the shallots into the roasting tin, place the beef on top and return to the oven for the remainder of the cooking time.
8. When the beef is cooked transfer to a large plate with the shallots and loosely cover with foil.
9. Make up the stock.
10. Spoon off any excess oil from the tin, leaving about 2x 15ml spoon of meat juices.
11. Place the tin over a medium heat and sprinkle over the flour.
12. Stir well with a small whisk, add a little stock and stir again, scraping the base of the pan to release any sediment.
13. Add the remaining stock, wine and any meat juices from the plate, season with black pepper and simmer for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally or until reduced to a well-flavoured gravy.
14. Strain the gravy before serving.

Top tips:

• Serve the beef with the gravy, vegetables and roast or boiled potatoes.
• Apple or white grape juice can be used as a substitute for white wine.


Why not use the Explore Food calculator, the British Nutrition Foundation's free online nutritional analysis programme, to calculate the nutritional information for this and other Food - a fact of life recipes?

Food skills:

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Cut, Chop, Slice, Dice & Trim
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Mix, Stir & Combine
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Melt, simmer and boil

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