Monday, June 24, 2013

Roast Beef Sandwiches with Tomato Chutney & Rosemary Goat Cheese

I recently shared my thoughts on the newly released Flour, too cookbook. It offers a great mix of savory and sweet items from the famed Flour Bakery + Cafe locations in Boston. I was thrilled to try the delicious Hot and Sour Soup recipe from the book, and have added it to my arsenal for all future cravings.

The book is filled with so many other fantastic recipes that I simply couldn't resist trying one out for a picnic by the Charles River in Boston with my very best friend!

There were too many options, which means I will be working my way through all of them in time, but for this occasion I decided to adapt the Roast Lamb with Tomato Chutney and Rosemary Goat Cheese to use beef instead. The meat was incredibly aromatic, with garlic and rosemary rubbed all over it.

I can't stress enough the importance of cutting the beef as razor thin as possible. If the slices are even slightly too thick, it becomes difficult to bite into the sandwich and tear them apart.

Sweet and sour flavors from the easy-to-prepare tomato chutney are a perfect compliment to the rare meat, along with lightly herbed softened goat cheese to add a bit of tang.

Freshness from the greens finishes off this picture perfect picnic fare.

I made the Flour Focaccia, which was springy, flavorful, and exactly what is used at Flour, but it left quite a bit of greasy residue in the paper bag I stored it in (it IS focaccia after all), so in the future my want-to-be-thin self might swap it out for a lighter bread option. Just because.

All in all, this was a very popular sandwich, made even more enjoyable by wonderful surroundings and excellent company! I would happily make this again, and definitely look forward to trying more innovative recipes from this book.

Roast Beef (or Lamb) Sandwich with Tomato Chutney and Rosemary Goat Cheese
Makes 4
(Adapted from Flour, too)

1 1/2 to 2 pound beef roast, top or bottom round (or lamb top round or boneless leg of lamb)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Tomato Chutney:
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1/4 small onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 (14.5-ounce) can "no salt added" diced tomatoes, with juice
2 tablespoons golden raisins
2 tablespoons dried currants
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

Rosemary Goat Cheese:
8 ounces fresh goat cheese, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

8 slices Flour Focaccia* or other good quality white or wheat bread
4 cups loosely packed mesclun greens or other mild lettuce

The night before, rub the beef (or lamb) all over the salt and pepper, cover with plastic wrap or place in a container with a tight-fitting lid, and let rest overnight in the fridge.

The next day, take the beef out of the fridge. If using leg of lamb, roll the lamb into a bundle and tie together tightly with kitchen twine. Rub the surface with the garlic, rosemary, and olive oil. Let rest at room temperature for 1 hour.

About 20 minutes before you are ready to roast, preheat the oven to 300 degrees F and place a rack in the center of the oven.

Place a roasting rack on a baking sheet, and put the roast on the rack. Roast for 50 to 60 minutes for a 1 1/2-pound roast or 65 to 75 minutes for a 2-pound roast, or until the thermometer inserted into the center of the roast registers 130 degrees F. Start checking after 45 minutes. Once it hits 100 degrees F, the cooking goes quickly, so check every 5 minutes or so. When the internal temperature reaches 130 degrees F, remove the roast from the oven and let cool. Let the roast rest in the fridge for at least 3 hours or up to overnight.

Meanwhile, make the tomato chutney: in a medium skillet, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring constantly, for about 2 minutes, or until softened a bit. Add the sugar and vinegar and stir for 1 minute until the sugar starts to dissolve. Add the tomatoes, raisins, and currants and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally and using the back of a wooden spoon to press down on the tomato pieces to break them up. The chutney should darken and the liquid will eventually evaporate. Let reduce and thicken for 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the salt, pepper, and parsley; remove from the heat and let cool. The chutney can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.

To make the rosemary goat cheese: in a small bowl, combine the goat cheese, rosemary, parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper and mix with a wooden spoon until well blended. The rosemary cheese can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week; bring to room temperature before using so it spreads easily.

Trim the well-chilled beef of any fat and slice it against the grain as thin as possible (very important because if it's thick at all it will be hard to bite into). Set the slices aside.

Lay the bread slices out on a clean, dry counter and spread four of the slices with the chutney, dividing it evenly. Spread the remaining four slices with the goat cheese, again dividing it evenly. Top each of the chutney-spread slices with an equal amount of the greens. Top each goat cheese-spread slices with 5 to 6-ounces of the sliced beef (you will have leftovers). Close each sandwich, then cut in half and serve.

*You can make Flour Focaccia by following the recipe for these Flour Bakery Burger Buns and shaping the dough about 10 inches long, 8 inches wide and about 2 inches tall, and baking for 35 to 45 minutes at 400 degrees F. Then cool for about 30 minutes and slice up for sandwiches.


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