Author Notes: When I hear the word "feast," I think of something luxurious. When push comes to shove, there's no better roast than Anne Seranne's Rib Roast of Beef, as put forth in Amanda's Essential New York Times Cookbook. Given the choice, that is what I would prepare for the extended family at every gathering. However, lacking the strength to continually pry the Spouse's fingers off the credit card, I usually have to settle for something a bit less extravagant. Enter the oft-maligned, oft-overcooked eye round. Skewered with sauteed arugula and bacon, studded with garlic, parsley and parmesan, cooked rare and sliced thin, it could even make you forget about a standing rib roast, especially when accompanied by several lovely bottles of cabernet. This recipe is adapted and expanded from an earlier one. —wssmom
boneless eye round of beef, about 6 pounds, or use two 3-pound roasts
medium shallots or small onions, chopped
handfuls arugula, to yield about 3 cups of cooked
garlic cloves, sliced thinly
ounces parmesan, shaved
a small bunch of Italian flat-leaf parsley
salt and pepper
- The day before cooking, salt the roast and return to the fridge, covered. An hour before starting, take the eye round out of the fridge and let come to room temperature. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 425 degrees.
- In a heavy skillet, cook the bacon and drain off almost all of the fat. Remove the bacon and chop. Saute the shallots until translucent, then toss in the arugula and cook, stirring, until wilted. Remove from the heat and mix in the chopped bacon.
- OK. Now, take your knife sharpening rod, and bore a hole straight through the middle of the eye round. If you don't have a knife rod, use some other device. Pack the arugula mix into the cavity, using your fingers, the end of a wooden spoon and/or the rod. Try not to let your imagination get the better of you during this step.
- Using a sharp paring knife, poke a bunch (20-30) of holes evenly distributed around the eye round, and insert a slice of garlic, a parsley leaf and a bit of the parmesan in each.
- Rub the roast with a tablespoon of olive oil, pepper thoroughly, and brown in a large, heavy, oven-proof skillet on all sides.
- Put the skillet in the oven, and roast until the thickest part of the roast reaches 120 degrees for rare, and remove, Let sit for 10-20 minutes before carving it nice and thin. Serve with your favorite potatoes and an in-season salad.