This week was all about leftovers. I love leftovers! Some people turn up their nose at eating the same thing the next day, but those people are uncreative divas. If you make something truly delicious, why wouldn’t you want to eat it the next day? That means one less thing you have to do in your busy schedule. Furthermore, eating leftovers doesn’t mean that you have to eat the EXACT same meal. Think outside the box and see what you can make with what you already have.
It was another cold week in Toronto and all I felt like was delicious roasted meats. My first of many meals was a roast beef. I used a sirloin roast. It was cheaper per pound than pre-cut sirloin steaks so I bought a 2 pound roast, cut off 4 sirloins for the freezer, and kept a one pound roast to make for my lover* and I.
*refer to your significant other as “lover”. It makes them uncomfortable.
For some reason I was drawn to fennel at the grocery store. I had never cooked with fennel before and this giant fennel bulb was calling my name!
I made a quick spice rub for the roast beef (olive oil, salt, oregano, paprika, pepper, thyme) and rubbed it into my little roast. I put carrots and onions in the bottom of the roasting pan and set the meat on top. I cooked him at 350 for about an hour, letting it rest for 15 min. He was a bit rare! I usually prefer my meat slightly more medium rare, but it was good quality beef so I dealt with it. While the meat was resting I added a bit of beef broth to the carrots and onions and let it continue cooking in the oven. The broth is not necessary but I had some already open in the fridge and thought it would make a nice au jus. (and it did!)
At the same time the roast was roasting I shoved some baby potatoes in the oven for about 45 min. Give em’ a light toss in olive oil, S&P, rosemary first.
The dinner needed something light and punchy to balance out the heaviness of the meat and potatoes. I decided to tackle this fennel by googling “fennel salad”. There were tons of recipes(including how to cut these majestic beasts) but I found one by Martha Stuart that was simple and fresh. Sliced fennel, fresh orange segments, olive oil, salt and pepper, red pepper flakes. I put chill flakes instead of red pepper (because that’s what I had) and added some lemon juice. Fresh lemon! The stuff in that plastic lemon tastes like poison. Don’t do it.
I thought the salad was great, but my boyfriend thought it tasted too much like liquorice. I hate liquorice but I really enjoyed the fennel. It’s crispy and refreshing. Overall, the meal was a hit! With out bellies full, we watched the Golden Globes and I am certain all those actors would have killed for a slice of roast beef.
The next day a made a quick breakfast using leftover potatoes and roast beef for a play on steak n’ eggs. Delicious.
If you hate raw fennel, never fear! Cooked fennel is here! When you roast fennel under a delicious chicken with onions it turns into a better version of cooked celery. Roasted fennel is celery’s hot new wife who has more personality.