Monday, 10 December 2012

Roast Topside of Beef with Black Pepper, Mustard and Celery Seeds

I have some new butcher friends, they popped up to say hi on Twitter a while ago now and invited me to go and have a look round their place, which I gladly accepted. I've always been interested in butchery and have long harboured intentions of taking some kind of course one day, to learn the basics at least... 

Freeman’s started as a family business in South Shields in 1953 and is still run by the grandson's of the founder, albeit as a much bigger operation in the middle of Team Valley these days. Robert showed me round, to where the meat arrives, how it's labelled and tracked so they know exactly which farm every piece has come from, which abattoir it was slaughtered in and when it arrived with them. Into the giant fridges with huge cuts of meat hanging from rails, followed by a demonstration from butcher Darren of how to cut out a sirloin steak and how to cut a Barnsley chop. I had a lovely time, and sadly couldn’t stay long enough to see more, but will definitely return... 

So as if that wasn't good enough already, this week Robert turned up with a Christmas meat hamper for me... Christmas come early! This is the first year that they have sold hampers on line, you can have a look at the whole range here, from little ones to huge ones, full of turkey, gammon, topside of beef, duck, pork loin, sausage meat and pigs in blankets. All delivered to your door for free, if you order before the 21st December.

So this weekend I roasted the beautiful piece of topside beef. I crushed a tablespoon of black peppercorns and bashed them up in a pestle and mortar with a tablespoon of mustard powder, a teaspoon of dried thyme, a teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of celery seeds, then mixed it all with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and spread it all over the outside of the meat. I roasted it at 190°C for 47 minutes... That is 12 minutes per 450g for medium rare, mine was possibly more on the rare side but that's how I like it. Make sure you rest it properly, covered in foil for 30 minutes. I served it with a big dish of Pan Haggerty potatoes, the little pigs in blankets and lots of vegetables, followed by an apple and walnut crumble. It felt almost like Christmas...


  1. Looks lovely, I might try it for Christmas day to break tradition!

  2. Yes that would be good, I'm breaking tradition with duck this year!
    Anna x


Happy cooking! Let me know if you make any of my recipes, send a picture, and let me know any of your own recipes and tips! Anna x