“Cook once, eat twice,” or “cook once, eat thrice” simplifies my life. I absolutely love the convenience of intentional leftovers. By cooking with two or three days or meals in mind, I usually have healthy food on hand when hunger strikes. I don’t have to starch from scratch every day or every meal. By having a rotation of fresh food and leftovers, I can more easily assemble meals. Some meals and days I don’t have to cook at all. This make sit more convenient for me to eat well, meaning it meals based on meats, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and healthy fats, on a daily basis.
Roasting meat without creating a sauna
In hot weather you can certainly keep the house cooler by grilling meats outdoors or poaching, steaming, or sautéing fish and poultry indoors. But what if you want to cook a larger cut of meat and you hunger for that delicious flavor that comes from cooking a roast in the oven? You can use a toaster oven and the recipe below.
I made this recipe a handful of times when I lived in Ohio in a house that didn’t have an air conditioner. We had ceiling fans, window fans, and an attic fan. Still the house was transformed into a sauna during the summer. I’ve also prepared this recipe in sunny Arizona. In both places I’ve used my Cuisinart Convention Oven (it holds a 10-inch by 11-inch baking pan) for this and other recipes. I don’t own a microwave oven and haven’t used one for almost 25 years. The toaster oven is perfect for cooking and reheating food quickly and efficiently.
It takes less time to preheat a convection toaster oven than a conventional full-size oven. When you use the convection mode, the oven surrounds food with an evenly heated airflow. It saves energy. Compared to a microwave, this mini oven retains more of the natural flavors and nutrients and alleviates the risk of radiation leaks. A convection oven cook and reheats food as much as 30 percent faster than a regular oven. You can roast or bake a cut-up fryer, a turkey breast, or beef roast, or cook 4 to 6 sweet potatoes while you eat breakfast and shower and dress or do laundry and house cleaning. You can broil 4 fish steaks or turkey burgers while you toss a salad without turning on a full-size oven.
Infallible Rare or Medium-Rare Roast Beef
I originally heard about this recipe from Charles Hunt’s book, Diet Evolution. He got the recipe from Cooks.com I made a few changes to the original, adding dried herbs and spices, upgrading from vegetable oil (rich in polyunsaturated fats) to olive or avocado oil (rich in safer monounsaturated fats), and expanding on the instructions.
Note: If roast has visible fat on the surface, leave it on to insulate and moisten the roast. If you must trim the fat, wait until after cooking. I like eating the fat. It adds so much flavor. Meat fat is actually healthier for you than polyunsaturated vegetable oils. Don’t believe me? Click here to watch the Fat Head Movie. Click here to read more about the big fat lies we've been told about the alleged hazards of saturated fats and the supposed benefits of vegetable oils.
1 roast beef with or without bones, any size (I used a 2.9 pound roast)
1 to 2 tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil*
1 teaspoon finely ground unrefined sea salt (Redmond Real Salt or Celtic Sea Salt)*
2 to 3 tablespoons ground mustard powder or your favorite salt-free spice blend*
1 teaspoon finely ground black pepper or white pepper*
* Reduce the amount of oil, sea salt, mustard, and pepper for a smaller roast or to suit your tastes.
- In the morning, preheat the oven to 375˚F. Rub the roast with oil. Mix the sea salt, dry mustard, and pepper on a piece of parchment paper or on a shallow platter or in a rimmed baking pan. With clean, dry hands, roll the roast in the seasonings to coat well, and then pat the spices on with your hands.
- Put roast in the oven. Close the door and cook for 1 hour. Turn off heat. Leave the roast in the oven for at least 2 hours and up to 4 hours (this version says you can leave it in the oven all day, but I wonder about the safety of that!). Do not open the door while the roast is in the oven.
- Thirty minutes before serving, turn the oven back on to 375˚F.
- Carve the roast, serve what you like, and refrigerate the rest. Once the meat feels cold to the touch, freeze what you don’t plan to use within 2 to 3 days. I use glass Pyrex and Corningware containers with fitted lids.
Here’s are two more variations on this recipe that use a higher temperature. Some versions list the cooking time in minutes per pound. Note: If you don't like it rare, you can cook it medium-rare by increasing the time when you reheat the roast.
Infallible Rare Roast Beef (version #2)
Roast Beef Rare (another version of)
Have you tried this recipe?
What do you think? What kind of roast did you use? What size? What seasonings? How did you like the results?