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Home Recipes Easy Peasy Roast Silverside or Topside

Easy Peasy Roast Silverside or Topside

You'll find lots of complicated recipes for roast beef that involve (for instance) making a trivet of roasted vegetables in the bottom of the roasting pan and then sieving them into the gravy, but if time is short and you want to keep washing up to a minimum, this is how we cook our roasts at West Ilkerton. Why make good meat complicated?

The photos are of a run-of-the-mill quick Sunday roast silverside for the family (it was 1.45 kg uncooked) with seasonal vegetables, roast potatoes, gravy and no Yorkshire puddings. You can easily make a more impressive meal by adding one or two more vegetables of a different colour and Yorkshire puddings.

(Some people like topside because it's a bit more tender than silverside and usually has more fat running through it, but we love silverside because it gives a tender, lean, meaty roast if cooked rare to medium rare. If overcooked, however, it can lose its tenderness. If you accidentally overcook the meat, slice it as thinly as you can when carving.)


  • A West Ilkerton topside or silverside roasting joint
  • Vegetables of your choice
  • Yorkshire puddings if possible
  • For the gravy: some water from the boiled vegetables (or beef stock if you have it) and a generous dash of port or red wine
  • A meat thermometer is really useful for testing whether the centre of the joint has reached the right temperature.


If the meat is frozen, defrost it at room temperature or in the fridge. Don't cook a joint (or any beef) from frozen.

To get a really tender roast, leave the thawed or chilled joint in its packaging at room temperature for a few hours before cooking, and when it has been cooked take it out of the oven to 'rest' at room temperature for about ten minutes before carving.

Remove your joint from its packaging and put it (without any liquid from the packaging) into a roasting tray with the fat side on top. Place it in the centre of a hot oven (about 200 degrees centigrade) for 20 minutes. 

Reduce the oven temperature to 170 degrees centigrade and roast for 20 minutes per 500g (or slightly less if the joint is long and thin or tapered at one end) for a medium rare roast. The core temperature should be 56 degrees for a medium rare roast.

Prepare your vegetables (and Yorkshire puddings) while the meat is cooking.

Take the meat tray out of the oven, remove the joint and put it in a warm, covered dish to rest while you make the gravy.

To make the gravy, add water from the boiled vegetables (and beef stock if you've got any) to the roasting dish until all the caramelised juices have lifted off the bottom and sides. Pour the liquid into a saucepan, drain of some fat from the top if it's very fatty and whisk in some flour or cornflour mixed with cold water to the liquid. Bring the gravy to the boil, stirring all the time, and add a generous dash of port or red wine.

Carve the meat and serve it on warm plate with hot vegetables and gravy.

Mustard and / or horseradish sauce go well with roast beef.


LEFTOVERS: Any remaining meat can be sliced thinly and eaten cold or cubed and slow-cooked with the rest of the gravy (for about 5 hours) until it's beautifully tender.