Last year, Mike and I spent a couple of nights in London. Mike had some meetings to go to and I tagged along, because food. London is pretty bomb, as a city, but add in the lure of food and I’m pretty much a goner. I knew that one of the things that we absolutely had to hit up was a classic Sunday Roast, capitals and all. I just love the idea of Sunday Roast: a big hunk of meat, roast potatoes, Yorkies…basically all the good stuff!
The thing is, Sunday Roast can be bad, as Mike and I discovered on a previous trip. Well, to be honest, it wasn’t bad, per se, but it wasn’t anything to write home about. This time around, I wanted to do it right. I wanted something that was going to be forever imprinted in my mind as the epitome of Sunday Roast. So, we did a little research and independently of each other, came up with the Harwood Arms. I let Mike think that the whole thing was his idea, but really, it was mine.
Do you guys ever do that? Mike and I are forever fake fighting about taking “credit” for discovering a place, but only if it’s good. Conversations will go somewhat like this:
Mike: Hey, want do you want for dinner tonight?
Me: I don’t know, maybe that new yakitori place? But I don’t know, do you think it’s good?
Mike: I don’t know, are you sure you want to try it?
Me: wavering Ugh, I don’t know? Maybe?!
Mike: Okay, let’s do it.
Later on, after dinner, it could go one of two ways.
A. If dinner was bomb, the conversation goes down like this:
Me: OMG, that was so GOOD. I’m so glad I found that place.
Mike: Yeah, good decision, me!
Me: What? I was the one who told you about it?!
Mike: Yeah, but let’s face it, you didn’t want to go, I practically had to force you to.
B. If dinner left something to be desired, the conversation is more like this:
Me: That was…interesting.
Mike: I didn’t want to go, we just went because you found it.
Me: What!? You said “let’s go”!
Anyway, long story short, the Sunday Roast at Harwood Arms was delicious. So delicious that I had to do a little Sunday Roast at home to alleviate our Sunday Roast cravings. Roasting a big piece of meat can be intimidating, but really, if you have the right cut of meat, you’re golden. I like using bone-in, partially because of presentation, and partially because you end up with a juicier roast. And to double up on the juiciness, I did a reverse sear: I started the roast in a low oven, bringing the meat up to a rosy 130°F, then finished it in a hot pan for that crisp maillard reaction goodness.
If you want to keep it simple, serve this with some mashed potatoes and pan-roasted broccoli. But, if you want the true Sunday Roast experience, you have to do Yorkshire puddings. I should have done some crispy roasted potatoes instead of mashed, but you win some, you lose some. But then again, are you really losing if you have mashed potatoes? If roast potatoes and mashed potatoes had to fight to the death, I really don’t know which potato corner I would be in. I would probably just be freaking out over either of them losing. Who’s team would you be on?
team potato (and sunday roast!) forever,
PS — Mike: this is so one sided. And also, it’s all about team french fries. And they’re actually team players.
- 1 kg bone-in rib eye roast
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 small shallots
- 4-6 cloves garlic
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Pat the roast dry with paper towels. Rub with a light amount of oil and season aggressively on all sides with salt and freshly ground pepper. Place in a snug oven-proof dish with the shallots and garlic. Roast for 1 hour or until the internal temperature is 130°F.
Remove the roast from the oven. Heat up a cast iron pan with a bit of oil over high heat. Sear the roast, on all sides, in a blazing hot cast iron pan, about 2 minutes per side. Let rest for 5-10 minutes, slice and serve.
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