London broil is often thought of as a specific cut of beef, but it is actually a cooking method. While a London broil is quite tasty, it is one of the simplest ways to make beef. You will basically be broiling the meat in the oven and paying close attention to make sure that the meat is not over cooked.
First, make sure you have the proper cut of meat. London broil may be labeled as such in the meat section of your grocery store even though it is not actually a cut of meat as mentioned previously. Your butcher is not ignorant of that fact; they simply want to make sure that their customers are not confused when they shop for the proper piece of meat for this popular dish. If you do not find anything labeled specifically as London broil, look for a thinly-cut top round roast or a very thick top round steak. The meat should be about two inches thick and about a foot long by six to seven inches wide. The thickness is the most important part, and the other measurements are just guidelines. Choose a piece of beef that is bright red and looks very fresh. This meat should be trimmed of excess fat and show little or no marbling. A little bit of fat around the edge if fine, but you should try to choose a piece that has either a very thin strip of fat running through the middle or no strip at all.
The second step is to tenderize and marinate your top round roast. Remove the meat from the package and sprinkle it with the meat tenderizer of your choice. Some people will also pierce the roast several times with a fork to make sure the tenderizer reaches the inner portion of the London broil. After tenderizing, allow the roast to rest for about thirty minutes. Some people do not tenderize their meat making this an optional step. To marinate the steak, choose a marinade that you enjoy. Many people use Italian dressing, but anything that’s oil and vinegar based will work. Place the beef in a sealable plastic bag and pour the marinade over it. Put the bag in the refrigerator and allow the marinade to soak into the meat for a few hours or overnight. For the best results, turn the bag over every hour or two.
When you’re ready to bake the London broil, remove the bag from the refrigerator. Set your oven dial to the broil setting and allow it to pre-heat. Line a very heavy baking pan with aluminum foil to minimize your clean-up time. Place the roast on the pan and put it in the oven on the center rack. After about fifteen minutes, turn the roast over so that the other side will cook evenly with the first. In about another fifteen minutes, remove the roast from the oven. If you’re unsure about how to judge the doneness, use an instant read digital thermometer. A London broil tastes best when it is cooked to a medium-rare doneness which is about 140 degrees. Make sure that you insert the thermometer into the center of the meat, but do not go all the way through. If you do, you may be measuring the temperature of the pan instead of the roast.
After the roast is done, place on a carving board and allow the roast to rest for ten minutes. This will allow the juices to recirculate through the meat. To carve the roast, use a sharp carving knife and hold the roast steady with a fork. Cut thin slices at a forty-five degree angle against the grain of the meat. A properly cooked London broil will be cooked completely on the outside, but still be very pink to red at the center. It is normal to have a lot of meat juices accumulate around the roast as you carve it.