It owns the coveted title of Butcher’s Shop of the Year, and Aubrey Allen never fails to disappoint. They’ve been trading for 80 years and hold a Royal Warrant. It’s not the first time I’ve written about this family butcher in Leamington Spa who consistently provide finely butchered cuts of meat. Whether it’s lamb or beef, the quality is undeniable and the provenance of their meat totally traceable. From the label, you can see the meat was slaughtered in the UK and cut at the same place. A quick internet search reveals that the Factory code UK 9025 EC is a slaughterhouse and meat processing plant in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, suggesting my meat is grass-fed from the area.
A break with tradition this Christmas meant out went turkey and in came beef, with the help of Simply Beef and Lamb. I’ve written about their role in the meat industry before, in short it’s the home of Red Tractor and Quality Standard beef and lamb. Their website is full of recipes, tips and, in particular, helpful pages with information about cuts of meat. I even managed to find my gravy recipe here which was the perfect match for the beef. I ordered a rib eye roll that weighed in at just under 2 kilograms. In my opinion this boneless cut
Aubrey Allen’s beef hails from cattle bred from North East Scotland, (some from Ballindalloch Castle, which is home to the oldest Angus herd), the South West of England and Ireland.
After letting the beef relax out of the fridge for about an hour, I oiled, seasoned and seared it. I preheated the oven to 240° (475°F or gas mark 9). When it hit temperature, I placed it on a roasting tray and turned down the heat to 200°C (400°F/gas 6). I cooked the meat for an hour and thirty minutes which yielded a perfect rare slice, put in for another 15 minutes for medium-rare. I let the beef sit for 25 minutes on a board, covered with foil and a tea towel. Any bloody juices leak from the beef in this time, it also makes it really easy to carve. Talking of which, if the word ‘carve’ scares you to death the Simply Beef and Lamb website have useful videos and photo-guides on how to do everything from sharpening your knife to cutting any joint.
The Roux Brothers have described the quality of their beef as “unrivalled” and I have to agree.
We were so eager to eat it; I totally forgot to take a picture of the plated meal. Apologies. All I can say is that it was one of the best Christmas meals I’ve made.
A huge thank you to my friends at Simply Beef & Lamb and Aubrey Allen butchers.