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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Banjo Cooks - Beef Round Tip - Eat for 3 weeks!

Using 1 Single Large Piece of Meat, We Make
  • Beef Pot Pies (link)
  • Stew Beef (link)
  • Pulled Beef BBQ (link pending - please check back later)
  • Sous Vide - Prime Rib-like steaks (link) and Sandwich meat or
  • Sous Vide - Roast (link)
I bought a large piece of beef (about 13 lbs, so dividing into three pieces, each piece will be around 4 pounds) at Costco yesterday for $2.89/pound, with the intent of cutting it into three sections and cooking each independently of the other two.  The first piece will be cooked as stew, the second will be braised, and the last third will be cooked Sous Vide then toasted on the grill.
This will prepare a great deal of meat for meals, probably enough for 3 weeks, or 21 meals x 2 (for 2 people), or 42 servings!  Way, way more than we can eat in just a few days.  However, I will use this opportunity to prepare meals that we will be able to pull from the freezer at any time over the next couple of months.  So, for a few hours work, you will have great tasting meals, and maybe enough to have 21 separate meals for 2 people.

Is that worth the work?  Yup, I think so!!

13 pounds of beef at $2.89 per pound....rounding that up to $3.00 per pound, means I paid less than $39.00 for this meat.  Let's call it $40.  If I make 21 x 2 = 42 meals out of this, call it 40 meals, then it means I'm paying about $1.00 per serving for great tasting meals!
Beef Round Tip Roast
Beef round tip roast is a wedge-shaped cut from the thin side of round. It contains cap muscle of sirloin and is usually prepared by braising or roasting.

What we're going to do
We are going to take one large piece of meat and split it into three large pieces, cooking each piece individually. First, for tonight's dinner, we're going use one large piece of meat to start the beef stew, which will also be used for beef pot pies.  While the Beef stew is cooking, we will put the second large piece of meat into the Sous Vide cooker - it will be ready  in two days.  Tomorrow we will braise the third large piece of meat to make braised beef and pulled beef BBQ.

Beef Pot Pies - the size 12" of pies
I like to start this around 2 PM for dinner tonight.  It takes about 1 hour to prep.  I like to cook mine for a total of 6 hours, but you can do it in 4 if you prefer.  This will make a beef stew first (If that's what you want, then you can stop here, but to make the beef pot pie, continue on).  Then we let it simmer with the lid off to reduce the liquid while intensifying the flavor.  Then we remove some of the stew from the pot and place into a deep dish pie pastry, place shredded fat-free sharp cheddar cheese, then covering with another deep dish pie pastry (flattened), then cooking in the oven at 325 for 20 minutes to brown the pie dough.  The rest of the stew is divide up and placed into individual Zip-lock Quart Freezer bags, where it will be quick-chilled and then frozen for later use.  Each Quart should contain enough for a meal for 3 - 4 people.

Time to prepare and cook

  • 30 minutes - 1 hour prep
  • 2 hours cooking covered (I go for 4 hours as it makes it more tender)
  • 2 hours cooking uncovered
  • 20 minute cooking pot pie in oven
  • Total elapsed time: about 5 hours, 1 hour of which requires your dedicated attention.

When Finished
This will produce enough to make four 12" beef pot pies.  I make one for tonight for the two of us; there's enough left over for lunch tomorrow for both of us.  That means we've got 3 more dinners plus 3 more lunches already prepared and residing in Zip-lock bags in the freezer - all you need to do is place the contents into pie dough and you're ready to cook the pot pies!

  • 3 - 4 pounds of round tip roast (if you can't find that, use chuck)
  • 4 large onions
  • 6 carrots
  • 3 stalks of celery
  • 1 can of dark beer, like a Guinness Stout (or coke/pepsi/dr.pepper, but not diet)
  • (optional: 3 chipotle peppers)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (optional - 1 pound of good quality bacon)
  • (optional: 1 pound of fat-free sharp cheddar cheese, shredded, for topping)
  • (optional: 1 cup all-purpose flower for dusting meat)
  • Using a piece of of beef round tip roast, about 3 - 4 lbs, cut into 1 inch squares.  
  • In a large enameled dutch oven, add a little olive oil (or cook therein about 1 pound of bacon to get bacon fat).  
  • Bring the oil up to a high temperature, but not enough to smoke. 
  • If desired, dust the meat with flower.  
  • Brown the cubed beef, about a cup at a time (this is so you won't lower the temperature of the oil too much), remove browned meat and add more beef until all of the beef has been browned.  You can do it all at once, but the meat won't have as much flavor.
  • Reduce heat to a simmer and place all of the browned beef into the dutch oven and cover.  
  • Chop up 4 large onions in to large chunks and add to the dutch oven.  
  • Chop up about 6 carrots into large bite size chunks and add to the dutch oven.  
  • Chop up 3 stalks of celery into bite sized chunks and add to the dutch oven.  
  • Add 1 bottle of dark beer or coke (not diet-coke).  
  • Add chipotle pepper (optional)
  • Cover and let simmer for 4 hours. 
  • Do not salt at this time - wait to add salt and pepper until after you've condensed it, otherwise, you can end up with too much salt and pepper.
  • Note: Once you've got this on the stove, then take the second piece of meet and put it into the Sous Vide cooker, where it will cook for 48 hours.  See link here.
  • Cook all ingredients in covered enameled pot on a simmer for 2 hours (if you have the time, I prefer 4 hours).
  • Uncover, and allow to simmer for about 2 more hours, or until the amount of liquid has evaporated until the liquid has thickened, stirring occasionally.  Monitor this so it doesn't cook down too much and burn.
Making the Pot Pies
  • Place enough contents into a 12" deep pie crust dough to fill it, (optional - cover with fat-free cheese; we prefer sharp cheddar), top with a flattened-out 12" deep pie crust.
  • Place into the middle of your oven and cook for about 20 minutes at 350 dF.  Watch it so it doesn't burn on top.  The contents already cooked, so you're just cooking the dough.
  • Remove from oven, and scoop-serve into large bowls. 

Freezing the remaining contents
  • First, be sure and do a quick-cool on the contents, then split into quart-size freezer zip-locks.  
  • Then freeze each zip-lock.  Try not to overlap the bags so the contents will freeze quickly.  Spread out as thin as possible so it cools quicker.
  • On removing, you can remove from zip-lock and place into a micro-safe bowl, thawing out in your microwave.  Continue to heat until it's cooked to a serving temperature.
  • Place into pot pies as outlined above.

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