2 tbsp mixed finely chopped fresh herbs,
such as oregano, thyme, basil, and savory; or 1.5 tsp dried
2 cups tomato chunks, fresh or canned
6 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole
1/3 cup dry white wine or sherry
the oven to 400 degrees. Use 1/2 tsp of the oil to grease the bottom
of a small flameproof roasting pan. Place the beef in the pan and
rub the remaining oil all over it. Sprinkle the top liberally with
pepper and the herbs. Scatter the tomatoes and garlic around the
beef. Roast the beef, basting with any juices that accumulate in the
pan, until the internal temperature reaches 125 to 130 degrees for
rare to medium-rare beef, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove the roasting
pan from the oven. Place the beef on a carving board and let sit,
loosely covered with aluminum foil, if serving the beef warm - for
15-20 minutes before slicing. If serving cold, let the beef come to
room temperature before covering with foil and refrigerating.
To make a
simple sauce, remove and reserve the garlic cloves and discard any
excess fat from the roasting pan, leaving the tomatoes in the pan.
Place the pan over moderate heat and add the wine, scraping the
bottom and sides of the pan to dissolve the browned juices. Press
down on the tomatoes to release their juices. Season to taste with
salt and pepper. Bring the sauce to a boil and let simmer about 5
minutes. Strain the sauce to a boil and let simmer about 5 minutes.
Strain the sauce to remove the tomato skins and pour into a gravy
boat or small serving bowl. Cut the beef into thin slices on the
diagonal and top with the sauce and reserved garlic. If serving the
beef cold, simply reheat the sauce until warm and spoon it over the
Makes 4-6 servings
This is the simplest of recipes, relying
only on a good piece of beef, a splash of olive oil, a few fresh herbs,
and a ripe, juicy tomato. In the summer, we like to make the roast early
in the morning before it gets too hot, let it chill all day, and then
serve it for dinner, thinly sliced, or mixed into salads or sandwiches.
But it's also wonderful served hot, topped with a spoonful of pan
juices. With this roast, serve a spinach salad and broiled tomatoes.