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Recipe: Beef Roast with a Sage and Garlic Rub

May 11, 2012
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Who said grass-fed beef wasn’t delicious! As my Dad would say, this dish is “not bad”.

One of the great things about the farm share is that I never know what kind of cuts I am going to get, so making dinner every night is an adventure. I just need to look through the freezer to see what I have and figure out how to cook it. Since I pick up all of the meat at once (18- 20lbs) every month the butcher freezes it as soon as it’s divided into cuts. Basically, the meat is frozen within a few hours of the kill.

Here are a few tips for cooking grass-fed beef:

  • Low and slow.
  • Defrost in cold water for several hours or in the fridge the day before. I use a stainless steel bowl.
  • Let the meat get to room temperature before you begin cooking. You should do this with all meat though (grass-fed or not). Cold meat proteins and a hot oven/stove/grill will result in tough and chewy results. It’s all about the way the proteins react with the temperature change – that’s another food science post though.

When I’m baking I use a recipe unless it’s something I make often (pie, cookies etc..), but when I’m cooking I just experiment until I get it right. I made this for dinner last night, and it turned out really well.  I actually wrote the recipe down, so let me know what you think:


  • 6-10 fresh sage leaves or 1 tbsp of dried sage
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 Tsp of kosher salt
  • 1 Tsp of coarsely ground pepper
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tbsp of worcheshire sauce
  • 1-2 pound beef roast (de-boned)


  • cutting board
  • roasting rack
  • tin foil
  • sharp knife
  • small bowl


  1. Preheat the oven to 450◦F
  2. Remove the roast from the refrigerator several hours prior to cooking to ensure it is close to room temperature.
  3. Wash the roast with cold water for several seconds and pat dry with paper towels. You want to make sure that it is dry. If it is wet it will not brown properly.
  4. Use a small sharp knife to pierce the roast 10-15 times on the side that will face up during cooking. Each incision should be 1cm or so deep.
  5. If the butcher left any large areas of lard that cover a side or portion of the roast, don’t trim it off! Use the knife to cut through the layer of lard stopping when you reach the meat. Repeat this process so that the lard has been sliced like a checkerboard. When the roast cooks, the lard will melt and crisp-up, adding flavor to the meat.
  6. Finely chop 4-5 of the sage leaves (to do this quickly, stack and then roll the leaves so they can all be chopped at once).
  7. Combine the oil, salt, pepper, sage, and worcheshire sauce in a small bowl and whisk briefly with a fork.
  8. Rub the mixture all over the roast – be aggressive!
  9. Slice the garlic cloves into thin slivers.
  10. Insert one sliver of garlic into each of the incisions that was made with the knife in step 3.
  11. Line the roasting pan with tin foil.
  12. Pour 1 cup of water into the bottom of the pan.
  13. Insert the roasting rack into the pan and place the roast on top.
  14. Cover the top of the roast with a foil tent and cook the roast at 450◦F for 15 minutes.
  15. Remove the foil tent and reduce the temperature to 350◦F and cook for 15 min/lb for rare, 20 min/lb for medium and 25 min/lb for well done.
  16. Remove the roast from the oven and cover will the foil tent. Let it rest for 10-15 minutes on the roasting rack before slicing.

Step 13

step 16

3 Comments leave one →
  1. johnny51 permalink
    May 15, 2012 10:59 AM

    That looks great. We need to find some grass fed beef around here. What are your thoughts on raw milk?? Yay or nay?

    • May 16, 2012 9:04 AM

      I talked to my farmer about it a few months ago and we fon’t have a good source for raw milk here. It would have to come from another state, so instead we use Calder dairy. It’s a local dairy that sells unhomogenized vat pasturized milk in glass returnable bottles – next best thing to raw. They even have a milk man for no extra charge if you want to use the service. How about you?

      • johnny51 permalink
        May 16, 2012 5:00 PM

        Raw milk is illegal in NJ, but not in PA. Even in PA though, it’s only legal for farmers to sell it at their farms apparently. We’ve had it once and it was good, but it wasn’t amazing good. Def better though.

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