When I was about 8 years old, my parents were quite playful. Things changed when I got into my teen years but when I was little, the parentals had a good time.
One hot summer day, my father was outside washing the car and the three of us kids were playing on the lawn. My mother walked up to the rose bush and pretended to smell a gorgeous yellow rose but what she was really doing was turning on the hose.
Just as my dad turned around, she squirted him right in the face with the hose and laughed harder than I’d ever seen her laugh. Then she turned around and ran into the house.
A little while later she came back outside and stood near the hose tap and waited for him to come around the corner of the house and she was going to get him again. Dad had a better idea.
He’d sneaked in and gone upstairs and gotten a bucket of water and had carefully opened the window above where my mother was standing.
THEN, just as dad was dumping the bucket of water over my mother’s head, the priest pulled into the driveway. There were shrieks of laughter from the three of us and my father knew when he saw the priest that my mother was going to be angry.
She was. Somehow it had been okay for her to squirt dad but for him to get her wet when the priest was looking was decidedly not okay. I still laugh about it every time I think of it. Her perfectly teased and sprayed hair now looked like a wet rat and her starched and ironed sundress looked rather wilted.
I should have a wonderful segue into a perfectly delicious recipe but all I can think of is, my dad loved rare roast beef. Every time I cook one I think of him. I made this one because it has very little fat and can be sliced thin for sandwiches. We’ve had 3 meals off this one roast and there’s still some left for tomorrow.
This cooking method gives me a roast beef that’s rare from edge to edge with very little loss.
We love mustard with roast beef and my good friend Helene from MasalaHerb.com has an easy recipe for homemade whole grain mustard you should really try. We love it and it’s great with this roast.
- 1 beef tenderloin (beef fillet), sinew removed and tied with string in intervals.
- 2 cloves garlic sliced thinly
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper
- The night before, remove sinew from the beef and tie the meat with cooking twine every 1½ inches.
- Put the beef in a shallow dish and sprinkle the sliced garlic over the top and then pour the balsamic vinegar over everything. Cover and refrigerate.
- Four hours and 15 minutes before serving time, preheat the oven to 70C/160F
- Take the meat out of the refrigerator, remove garlic and pat dry with paper towels. Place meat in a roasting pan and let it sit for 15 minutes to warm up.
- Put the meat in the oven, close the door and leave it for 4 hours.
- When four hours is up, heat a skillet on high heat.
- Remove roast from the oven and brush with oil. Place in the hot skillet and roll it around to caramelize for just a minute or so.
- Place on cutting board and cover with foil and rest for 15 minutes.
- Slice and serve with mashed potatoes and gravy or roasted vegetables for a wonderful meal.
We did some more ball chasing in the pool today. There could be a bomb going off nearby but Charlie wouldn’t take his eye off the ball. It’s the green thing in the air – with feet. That’s why it’s called baby. He’d do anything to get baby so we keep it on top of the cat tower because we’ve lost so many of them in the canal. At $8.95 each they add up.
Karen (Back Road Journal) says
What a terrific way to get a perfectly cooked roast beef…it has to make great sandwiches.
Jennifer from Milk and Honey says
I love rare beef. Anything more than rare for fillet is a crime in my world. Love your story too. It’s funny and amazing how food can trigger memories.
That roast beef looks beautiful! I’ve never tried cooking my own – I get nervous with big cuts of meat. If they get ruined it’s dinner (and $$) down the drain. Pinning this and will give it a try!
Eva Taylor says
My folks always joked around each other too. Thanks for sharing that happy memory with us.
That roast does look incredibly good Maureen, I love how evenly rare it is. We don’t have beef often but when we do it is usually the tenderloin which tends to be very expensive in these parts so over cooking is always a huge fear. Thanks for this fail-safe method, I’ll definitely bookmark for our next roast.
OMG OMG OMG !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This picture of your roast beef looks just like my mom’s and I bet it tastes like it too,even though she did not use Balsamic vinegar. I love roast beef and all the things you can do with the leftovers. Being Hungarian my mother used double the garlic you did. 🙂
Will definitely try this.
Love the continuing saga of Charlie. He is a star!
Double garlic next time in honor of your mother!
Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom says
Maureen, I guess it’s easier for parents to be playful with younger kids. . because teens don’t want any part of it, right?! 🙂 I love this roast beef!! pinned. . maybe I can make this for the hubs for Valentine’s Day!!! We love our beef!
Wait, that was GARLIC on top of the roast? It’s gotta be elephant garlic, cuz it’s huge. I thought, “Why is Mau’ putting potato chips on a roast?” I love rare beef, and am fighting the urge to try this. I want to stop eating meat altogether. It’s apparently not happening yet.
There was one clove that was huge but the rest of them were normal 🙂 I put it in the garlic slicer and whoosh whoosh, the meat was in the fridge.
John@Kitchen Riffs says
I love rare roast beef! And I’ve become a fan of cooking it at low temperature too — doesn’t dry out, and is evenly rare throughout the roast. I often sear mine in the skillet before I put it int he oven, but am coming around to the idea that it’s better to do it right at the end — it takes much less time. Always happy to see pictures of Charlie!
Debbie Russell says
Never, ever throw away an overcooked beef roast. Simply put it into the slow cooker with some beef broth. You may also add some caramelized onions. Let it cook on low about 3-4 hrs or until it completely falls apart. This makes a wonderful open-faced roast beef sandwich or goes well over noodles or rice. It can also be used to make a really good stew. Unless it’s burned to a crisp, salvage it.
I’d never throw it away but after spending $38 on a roast tenderloin, overcooking it is sinful. 🙂 Good idea for what to do with it. I want one of those sandwiches now. 🙂
Rachel (Rachel's Kitchen NZ) says
Mmmm – rare roast beef – a standing rib roast was a favourite of my father’s and I sometimes still cook this on this birthday – I love this method – must give it a try – thanks Maureen and Maggie:)
What lovely fond memories, and the roast looks heavenly.
At first I thought you would do a sous-vide post, but this is awesome!
and of course, the story of your parents made me really laugh, I could visualize the whole scene so well, you have a way with words! My Mom was never the player, but the subject of many of my Dad’s practical jokes, like taking her regular meat turnover from her plate and putting his special one – LOADED with the hottest Brazilian pepper. He used to do that with my Grandma too, and then he would laugh to the point of tears (and me too… 🙂
Lovely memory of your parents being playful and the roast beef is an impressive dish. Not something my dad would have liked though as he preferred things with bones.
Charlie’s play pool area is very well designed for chasing Baby. He’s a very fortunate dog.
Barbara | Creative Culinary says
Love the story; can almost picture it in my head; the way woman used to dress!!
Even more though I think I love this beef. I’ve never heard of this technique and now desperate to try it. I like my beef just this side of ‘moo’ and you did it!
Hope John is improving and not driving you bonkers as the patient. Much love…
Your roast looks perfectly cooked! And, what a great story about your parents. I love it when food sparks a good memory.
Hotly Spiced says
I’m going to make this. I have never cooked beef on such a low temperature! Your beef looks amazing and your dad would love it! Your poor mum! xx
Lizzy (Good Things) says
Such a fun story, Maureen… I love a good water fight on a hot day! Great recipe and lovely to see Charlie having fun in the pool.
Claudia Lamascolo says
I think I need some beef now this week looks drool worthy! hope hubby is doing better!
He’s much better AND he’s resting (some).
Merryn Galluccio says
What a lovely childhood story Maureen. It is wonderful how you tie delicious meals to memories and this is a perfect roast beef, Dad would be proud 😀
Laura (Tutti Dolci) says
What a sight that must have been for the priest, such a great memory!
Anna @ shenANNAgans says
Hahaha… I love it, what a fun memory. 🙂 My dad was a roast lamb guy, wish it were beef. Love yours, its gorgeous. Is that weird to think a piece of meat is gorgeous. LOL! Happy weekend lovely lady. Great photos, I am now going to put meat in the oven for a fancy lunch. 🙂
My mother never ever cooked lamb. It was horrendously expensive and on her budget it just wasn’t feasible for a family of 6 where she cooked two main meals a day. I was 25 and had left Maine before I’d had lamb. 🙂
LOL—what a fun memory! And speaking of memorable, my family would certainly swoon over your perfectly cooked tenderloin. Terrific technique.
Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl says
What a amazing, mouth watering recipe. It would be the perfect Sunday dinner for us, must add it to the menu!
this is exactly the way I like my beef too! Looks delicious!!!
Thanks so much for sharing x
Suzy @ The Mediterranean Dish says
What a great story from your childhood! Made me laugh hard! Glorious recipe again. Hope John b is feeling well.
Fran @ G'day Souffle' says
YOU MADE ME LOOK! After your Facebook warning for vegetarians ‘not to look’, I was tempted to look at your new post. I looked and I liked! (BTW I’m not vegetarian). I always wondered how to cook a roast beef so it is nice and tender- thank you!
LOL one of my good friends is a veggo and I knew she’d look anyway. She did. 🙂
Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella says
Haha our mothers sound quite similar except mine would have never been so playful! 😛 Love a good rare roast beef and this one looks like perfection! 😀
InTolerant Chef says
So yummy indeed Maureen, still so perfectly pink! Delicious 🙂
Mrs Mulberry says
I love this story Maureen, hilarious – I can just picture it! Beautiful recipe too xx
Nagi@RecipeTin Eats says
I never know where to start. 1. The story. You had me giggling like a school girl with glee at the thought of your mum looking like drowned rat with the priest in the driveway. 2. Charlie. I’m going to be in that pool WITH him. 3. The beef. You ROCK. I always worry about tenderloin, getting the perfect cooking time. I never thought about slow cooking it! And I am guessing that this is a bit forgiving so the thickness of the beef / length / overall weight can vary a bit and you’ll still get the perfect roast beef?
I don’t know how it works, Nagi, Maggie Beer is my hero. She said it would work so I tried it. And I tried it again. And again. Every time perfect.
The story of your parents cracked me up. 🙂 Love that the priest showed up just in time to witness the mayhem. 🙂
Sugar et al. says
Your story about your parents is so sweet, it made me smile:-) The beef looks terrific. I have little experience of cooking beef at home but this recipe is just so tempting.
Your parents sound hilarious and so much fun!
I love roast beef too and I usually do it with a log of rib eye coz I love some caramelized fat on the meat. Shouldn’t the cooking time be dependent on how big the piece of meat is?
According to Maggie, most fillet steak in Australia is about the same diameter and I’ve never had an instance where this method didn’t work. 🙂
This looks delish Maureen! I love being able to get more than one meal from something that I’ve cooked. I enjoyed reading the story of your parents. Somehow it didn’t totally surprise me that your mom got mad, after all we are “supposed to” always look nice..ha!
That has to be the best roast beef I’ve ever seen, it’s just how I like it!
I love the story about your folks, they sound just lovely. My parents divorced when I was young but I love remembering those times when they were young and happy 🙂
Kylie @ Happy Today Magazine says
That recipe is THE best I will try this week…love your pic of Charlie….and your stories x
We must get together sometime soon. 🙂
Choc Chip Uru says
Haha your memory made me smile my friend, my dad and mum have the same kind of playful relationship 😀 (though when they turn on me, it is scary!)
Your recipe for roast beef looks exquisite, wouldn’t mind making it for my brother!
Choc Chip Uru
My husband loves garlic a lot, I think this roast beef looks great for everyone !
Helene D'Souza says
LOL what was the priests reaction? What a great story and memory Maureen.
Do you have a few different gravy recipe for your roast beef Maureen, I would like to try your roast beef this weekend. Looks fantastic and since the temperatures are cooler I could eventually make this. =)
Liz @ Floating Kitchen says
What a great story! And love this roast beef. I must admit I’ve never cooked one myself. Looking forward to try it!
Mary Frances says
Your parents sound like a riot. I love love LOVE this roast beef, it looks so succulent and perfect!
Great story about your parents! My husband loves his roast beef like this.
Iron Chef Shellie says
hahaha great story! dad’s are always up to no good aren’t they!
Nothing like a good roast beef and I always perfer it rare! Yours looks perfect!
Chris Scheuer says
So funny, I just read about “reverse searing” and was wondering how it would work. I think I found my answer! This looks amazing!
That’s a gorgeous looking roast beef! Loved the funny heart-warming story about your parents too.
Thanks, Krys, lovely to connect!
Jean | DelightfulRepast.com says
Maureen, loved the story! My parents had lots of problems all of their married life, but must have had fun between fights because they held it together until my mother’s death. She loved very rare roast beef but made it more well done for my father, and that is how I prefer it as well. But I’m happy to know this method for those occasions when I’m cooking for someone who likes it rare.
Shashi at Runninsrilankan says
Haha – sounds like your mom and dad knew how to have fun – and I couldn’t help cracking up at the thought of your mom standing there getting soaked while the priest pulled up! At least, it wasn’t the priest who got soaked by mistake -right? 🙂
Thanks for sharing that story – how lovely to use it to showcase your dad’s fav dish!
I still remember it was Father Lavoie and he thought it was hilarious. My mother – not so much. 🙂
Helen | Grab Your Fork says
Wow that roast beef looks just perfect, and your parents sound like they were so much fun!
Gingi Freeman says
WOW, that is cooked to perfection!! I am always nervous when I try to cook something rare! – http://www.domesticgeekgirl.com
Abbe @ This is How I Cook says
I don’t eat roast beef anymore, but I am pinning anyway because my daughter needs this! I do miss the smell of a roast baking. My grandfather was a butcher and we ate roast once to twice a week. Love that story!
Bring your daughter over. 🙂 I’ll cook this for her.
Debbie Russell says
I totally agree, Maureen. I adore rare roast beef and overcooking would be a sin. LOL. I advised about the overcooked roast beef because I have a niece that would have thrown it away. My sister caught her throwing away half a package of gorgeous pork chops one day. She was young, and a new wife, cooking dinner and prepared half the chops for cooking and turned to drop the rest in the trash. My sister shrieked and stopped her, asking what she was doing. She replied that they couldn’t eat them so there was no reason to cook them. My sister then explained the art of either freezing the rest before cooking or cooking and then freezing.
Karen and Mac says
This recipe is a treasure to have!
Melissa @ My Recent Favorite books says
I loved the story of your Mom and Dad having fun! =) I can imagine how upset your Mom must have been to have her hair and dress wet when company came by…
I dont eat rare meat, but I bet your recipe tastes good!
Love the photo of Charlie, looks like he is having fun!
David Crichton says
I don’t know how I missed this post, Maureen. Looks a superbly cooked fillet. I’ll take an entire one please, I might share it if I’m in a good mood.
Oh wow, how delicious that looks!! 🙂 This is one of my all time favorite dishes!! I normally good one of these a month and during Christmas I cook whole beef tenderloins on the grill, I cooked 14 of them a few week ago. 120 off the grill they come for rare!! MMMM good!
I have a real problem with rare meat, I was brought up to believe that pork had to be very well cooked for health reasons & I like well done lamb & beef. I find the taste of rare or medium ‘wrong’. A maitre d tried a blind test on me once & was amazed I chose the well done steak. For me the perfect steak starts half an inch thick & is a quarter inch when finished. In Paris I never order steak as the chips are always soaked in blood. End result I only eat roast beef or steak at home. While out I check which items on the menu are likely to be properly cooked & hot when they arrive. It is limiting but avoids the awkward questions when I leave most of the food on the plate. Incidentally I find rare meat much more tough than well cooked. I know every one tells me I am wrong but my telepath & taste buds disagree.
Everyone should eat whatever they enjoy, John. It’s definitely what I do!