Ultimate roast beef

Matt Tebbutts classic recipe involves a juicy strip of sirloin marinated in thyme, garlic and pepper for a few days and served with a homemade horseradish cream
By Matt Tebbutt
Ultimate roast beef
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6-8
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 45 minutes - 2 hours
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes plus marinating overnight and resting
  • Effort: easy


For the roast beef

  • 3 kg beef sirloin, on the bone, chined
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 sprigs thyme, leaves only
  • black pepper
  • olive oil, for drizzling

For the horseradish cream

  • knob of unsalted butter
  • ½ onions, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 125 ml dry white wine
  • 4 tbsp chicken stock
  • 125 ml double cream
  • 125 ml crème fraîche
  • 40 g freshly grated horseradish

For the gravy

  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 dashes of port
  • 125 ml red wine
  • 1 sprigs thyme, leaves only
  • 150 ml beef stock

To serve

  • roast potatoes
  • seasonal greens


1. For the beef: weigh the beef and calculate the cooking time, allowing 12-15 minutes per 450g according to how you like your meat done. A 3kg joint should take 1 hour 20 minutes to 1 hour 40 minutes, plus 30 minutes resting after roasting. Place the beef in a large bowl and season well with freshly ground black pepper. Add the garlic and thyme and drizzle generously with olive oil. Cover with cling film and leave to marinate in the fridge at least overnight (two days if possible).

2. Take the beef out of the fridge 1-2 hours before roasting, to allow it to come to room temperature.

3. For the horseradish cream: melt the butter in a saucepan until frothing and sweat the onion and garlic for 3-4 minutes, or until softened but not browned. Add the white wine and bring to the boil, cooking until the liquid has reduced by half. Pour in the stock and reduce by half again, then stir in the cream. Strain the sauce through a sieve into a bowl and stir in the crème fraîche. Add the horseradish and then season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Set aside.

4. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 7.

5. Heat a large heavy-based roasting tin on top of the stove until smoking hot. Season the beef with salt and sear the beef until browned on the fat and meat side, around 2-3 minutes on each side. Spoon the marinade over the meat then roast for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and roast for the remainder of the calculated time.

6. Transfer the meat to a warm plate, cover with foil and leave to rest for 30 minutes. Reserve the juices in the tin.

7. After the beef has rested, take the meat off the bones in one piece and reserve the bones. Keep the meat warm while you make the gravy.

8. For the gravy: pour off all but about 2 tablespoons of the roasting juices from the tin then place the tin over a medium heat on top of the stove. Add the port and wine and bubble until reduced slightly, then add the beef bones and stir in the thyme, garlic and stock. Reduce by about half, then lift out the bones and strain the gravy into a gravy boat.

8. To serve, carve the meat into thick slices and place them on warm plates. Spoon the horseradish cream to the side and serve with roast potatoes and greens.

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