beef feast

Hereford Rib with Stout Gravy

Traditional roast rib or topside joint with a rich stout gravy.

Serves: 10

Total time (prep and cooking): 2 hours (for 3lb rib)


  • 1 x 1.8kg/4lb lean rib of beef, French-trimmed and chined, boneless rib, or topside joint
  • Salt and freshly milled black pepper
  • Large bunch fresh thyme leaves
  • 15-30ml/1-2tbsp olive oil
  • 15ml/1tbsp plain flour
  • 300ml/½pint stout
  • 150ml/¼pint good, hot beef stock


  • Preheat the oven to gas mark 4-5, 180-190°C, 350-375°F.
  • Place the joint on a chopping board, score the skin and make several slits over the joint. Season. Stuff the fresh thyme leaves into the slits and rub the olive oil over the joint.
  • Place the joint on a metal rack in a large roasting tin and open roast for the preferred calculated cooking time, basting occasionally with any rich beefy juices.
  • When the beef is cooked transfer to a warm platter, loosely cover with foil and leave to rest for 5-10 minutes. Retain the contents of the roasting tin for the gravy.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the gravy, spoon off any excess oil from the tin, leaving about 30ml (2tbsp) of any rich, beefy juices. Place the roasting tin over medium heat and sprinkle over the flour. Stir well with a small whisk or wooden spoon, gradually add the stout and stock. Stir again, scraping the base of the pan to release any sediment.
  • Add any meat juices from the platter, adjust the seasoning, if required and simmer for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally or until reduced to a well-flavoured gravy. Strain before serving.
  • Serve the beef with roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings, seasonal vegetables and the stout gravy.