A roast beef has been on my grilling to-do list forever, but sticker shock for rib roast or full tenderloin (my preferred cuts) has really been a setback—a special occasion price for a time that just never seemed to come. Instead of waiting it out, it was time to take a more frugal approach with beef eye round.
A good sear followed by an indirect cook is really all you need to make excellent roast beef out of the finer cuts, but for an already tougher piece of meat like the one I bought, Cook's Illustrated says to place the roast in an aluminum pan after the sear to shield it from excess heat, allowing it to cook more evenly, at a lower temperature.
This did the trick, transforming it into a tender roast beef. The meat was done to a nice medium, stayed juicy when sliced, and had an excellent herb crust, but for all that was right, it was still missing the beefy robustness a cut like a rib roast would deliver. That's where the horseradish cream sauce came in.
I won't truly be satisfied until my grill plays host to a beautiful tenderloin, but this will do for now.
About the author: Joshua Bousel brings you new, tasty condiment each Wednesday and a recipe for weekend grilling every Friday. He also writes about grilling and barbecue on his blog The Meatwave whenever he can be pulled away from his grill.
- 1 beef eye round roast, about 3 to 4 pounds
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons Kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley
- 1 (13- by 9-inch) disposable aluminum roasting pan
- Horseradish cream sauce
- Type of fire: two-zone indirect
- Grill heat: medium
Pat beef dry with paper towels. Brush all over with olive oil then season liberally with salt and pepper.
In a small bowl, combine rosemary, thyme, and parsley. Sprinkle all sides of roast with herb mixture, using hands to pat into beef. Wrap beef tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and arrange the coals on one side of the charcoal grate. Set cooking grate in place, cover gill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Place beef on the hot side of the grill and cook until well browned on all sides, about 10 minutes.
Move beef to aluminum roasting pan and place on cool side of the grill, cover, and cook until an instant read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the beef reads 125 for medium-rare or 130 for medium, about 40 to 60 minutes more. Remove from grill to carving board and let rest for 15 minutes. Carve and serve with horseradish cream sauce.