Steamship Round of Beef - ☺

Steamship Round of Beef

I recall with pleasure the times in my life when I ate steamship round of beef at good buffets, weddings and in some better restaurants. Roasted right and kept warm and cut into thin slices it is tender, juicy and very tasty. That means the degree of doneness is such that it is crisp on the outside and medium rare on the inside.

I decided to make that roast at home for a family gathering of twelve of people. What I purchased was a Choice grade 12 pound beef round tip at Costco® for a mere $29. Then I searched the Internet for different ways to prepare it so I could make an informed decision about what I would do. As it turns out, the very first recipe I found was unique from all the others, for it involved high temperature roasting, and that vastly appealed to me so I made my decision. Maybe the appeal is from the great results from very high temperature initial roasting in doing standing rib roasts and the similar effect making the Serendipity Steak.

My decision was to use the high roasting temperature recipe with the addition of kosher salt. Why? High temperature charcoal grilling of beef as done in Brazil includes rubbing the exterior with freshly ground black pepper and kosher salt before grilling. Since this recipe calls for very high temperature initial roasting I decided the kosher salt would be a great addition to the pepper.

I now report back after making this roast, which came out fine. My only recommendation is to use a meat thermometer to assure the wanted results.


12 lb. Choice Beef Round Tip

16 medium size garlic cloves (The general idea is to use one to one and one quarter cloves of garlic per pound of meat)

¼ cup of freshly ground black pepper

¼ cup of kosher salt


Preheat the oven to a temperature of 500ºF.

Cut slits about one to one and one quarter inches deep evenly on all sides except the bottom side of the beef to contain the garlic cloves, one clove per slit.

Cut a garlic clove into four pieces and insert the four pieces into one of the slits. Repeat that procedure for each slit until all the garlic has been processed.

Rub the outside of the beef with the freshly ground pepper and the kosher salt.

Put the roast on a rack in a shallow roasting pan or large all metal skillet.

Roast the beef at 500ºF for five minutes per pound. With a 12 lb. roast that means one hour and that will put a good crust on the exterior of the completed roast.

Turn the oven off and let the roast remain in the oven for two hours. Do not open the oven door.

After two hours turn the oven on and set the temperature to 250ºF. Roast the beef for an additional thirty minutes.

After those steps check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer inserted into the center of the roast but not into fat or next to bone.

According to the different recipes I read an internal temperature of 140ºF will be a rare roast. 145ºF will be a medium rare roast. 160ºF will be a medium roast. 170ºF will be a well-done roast.

If necessary, continue to roast the beef until the internal temperature is about 5 degrees lower than your goal. I prefer medium rare. If necessary you can increase the oven temperature to 300ºF if the roast is too cool in the center after you finish the second roasting period and check the internal temperature, like below 140ºF.

Remove the beef to a serving platter and put it into a warm 150ºF oven until you are ready to serve it. It will actually continue cooking briefly and the internal temperature will increase to the level you want … thus the removal from the hot oven when the actual internal temperature is 5ºF lower than the goal temperature. Leave the roast in the warm oven at least ten minutes to rest it before carving but no more than twenty minutes is necessary.

When the meal is served, slice the roast horizontally starting at the smaller top section, cutting thin slices about one quarter to one third inch thick. Do not cut more at one time than is necessary for each serving so that the meat remains warm. Cover it with aluminum foil if necessary, which means if it is not completely used during the first serving.

Note that with the very high temperature initial roasting the degree of doneness will vary considerably from the exterior to the center of the meat. This is particularly true on the thinner end or top of the roast, and people who prefer well done or medium meat will find what they want on that end. The medium rare or rare areas will obviously be in the thicker parts of the roast about one third of the way down from the top. It is typical in restaurants to cut the roast into two or three pieces at the beginning of carving so customers can have exactly the degree of doneness wanted in their individual servings.

Restaurants have to keep the beef roast warm during serving as the time frame for serving might be as long as two or three hours. They use carving stations that usually have a heat lamp above and close to the top of the uncut meat to assist keeping the meat warm. At home, the amount of beef roasted should correspond to the number of people eating, and it is likely most or all of the roast will be sliced and eaten immediately after it is served. Making provision for keeping it warm is unlikely to be necessary, but you can use the 150º F warming oven if necessary.