Roast beef silverside, barbecue suet pie, watercress, charred cabbage

  • medium
  • 6
  • 2 hours 30 minutes
Not yet rated

Paul Welburn's roast beef silverside recipe is served with an unctuous suet pie, filled with braised silverside and a barbecue sauce for a great alternative Sunday roast. The charred cabbage adds a wonderful freshness and crunch to the dish. Paul provides the method for cooking the beef in both a conventional oven and sous vide, so this dish is achievable for everyone, no matter what kit you have at home.

First published in 2016
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Roast beef silverside

Barbecue sauce

Suet pie filling

Suet pastry

Barbecue cabbage


  • Temperature probe
  • 14cm pudding basin


Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6, or if using the sous vide method, preheat a waterbath to 57°C
To prepare the beef, add the oil to a large pan and once hot, add the silverside fat-side down. Allow the fat to slowly render down until it turns a deep golden colour. Seal the other sides of the meat until nicely browned
If cooking sous vide, remove from the pan and place in a vacuum bag with the thyme, seal with a bar sealer and place in the water bath for 24 hours. The meat will have a very tender finish
To cook in an oven, transfer the beef to a roasting tray on top of the optional vegetables and add the herbs. Lightly cover with tin foil and place in the oven for 15 minutes. After this time, turn the oven down to 150°C/gas mark 2 and cook for 1 hour 15 minutes, checking and basting every 15 minutes (or until the core temperature of the meat reaches 57°C)
For the barbecue sauce, bring all the ingredients to the boil and reduce by half. Set aside until needed
To make the filling for the suet pie, add a dash of oil to a large pan and seal the meat in batches – it is important to do this so that they colour nicely and do not stew in the pan. After browning each batch, tip the contents of the pan into a colander set over a bowl
After all of the meat is sealed, add the vegetables to the pan and fry until nicely caramelised. Add the meat back to the pan and stir in the tomato purée. Cook out for 2 minutes, then deglaze with the beer and wine (wine lends a sweetness to counter the bitterness of the beer). Allow to reduce by half
Once reduced, add the stock and thyme and cover with a round of parchment paper (a cartouche). Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 25–30 minutes, or until the meat is tender
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves, fresh
  • 1l beef stock, or brown chicken stock
Add 3/4 of the barbecue sauce to the meat and mix well to combine. If the mixture is a little wet you can reduce it further – it needs to be a tight mixture but with a good amount of moisture
Reserve the remaining barbecue sauce for glazing and serving with the pie after cooking. Allow the filling to cool while you make the pastry
To make the suet pastry, mix together the suet, fat, salt and flour and then stir in the water using a flat knife. Bring it all together to form a soft dough, adding a little extra water if necessary. Allow to rest in the fridge before rolling
Divide off about a quarter of the dough to be used for the pastry lid. Dust your work surface with flour and roll out the larger piece of dough into a circle roughly 30cm in diameter and 3mm thick. Lightly oil and place a disc of parchment cut to fit the base of a 14cm pudding basin into the base (this will help to release the pie after cooking)
Line the pudding basin with the pastry, leaving the excess pastry hanging over the edge. Roll out the smaller piece of dough until it is large enough to form a lid for the basin, also about 3mm in thickness
Spoon the cooled filling into the pastry-lined basin, dampen the edges with water and add the pastry lid. Press the edges together to seal and trim away the excess pastry neatly
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
Place a piece of baking parchment over a sheet of foil and make a large pleat in the middle (this allow the pie to expand as it cooks). Fix the parchment and foil on top of the basin, foil-side up
Place in a deep baking tray of hot water (so the water comes halfway up the sides of the basin) and place in the oven. Cook for 1 hour, then remove and allow to rest before turning the pie onto a serving board and peeling off the parchment disc
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
To prepare the cabbage, cut the cabbage into 6 pieces horizontally to form wedges. Brush with oil and season with salt
Place in a hot pan or a plancha and cover with a lid to allow the cabbage wedges to smoke and bake simultaneously
After 5 minutes, turn the cabbage onto the other cut side and repeat, once again with the lid on
After a further 5 minutes, the cabbage will be coloured and half-cooked. Transfer to a tray and cover with tin foil
Place in the oven for 10 minutes, or until the cabbage is tender but still with a nice crunch – the other dish elements are quite soft so this offers a nice contrast. Remove the cabbage and season again before serving
When the roast beef is ready, remove from the oven and rest for 15 minutes. If you cooked the beef sous vide, remove from the bag and brown in beef dripping in a hot pan to caramelise before serving
Warm the remaining barbecue sauce in a pan and use a little to glaze the suet pie
To serve family-style, place the glazed pie on a large wooden board and place the cabbage wedges next to it. Place the roasted silverside joint to one side and add some of the additional barbecue sauce to the board. Dress the watercress in lemon juice and olive oil, add the the board and serve
First published in 2016

Paul Welburn has years of Michelin-star cooking behind him, holding a star for five years at restaurant W1.

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