Top round roasts come from the hind quarter of the steer, and those muscles get well worked. Consequently, top round roasts are lean and full-flavored, but lacking fat and marbling, they don’t tenderize quickly. Cook your top round oven roast slowly with a low heat. This gives the collagen time to break down but doesn’t cause the muscle fibers to contract so much that they squeeze out the precious juices. As a bonus, the collagen imbues the roast with a hearty flavor.
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Remove the roast from the refrigerator an hour before cooking. Pat the roast dry with paper towels.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
Massage salt, pepper and any other seasoning your recipe calls for into the roast. Rub oil over the entire roast.
Slice any vegetables you want to bake with your roast. Vegetables commonly include potatoes, celery, onions, carrots and mushrooms. Toss the vegetables with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper.
Preheat the skillet over a high temperature on the stovetop. Spread oil over the bottom of the skillet. Heat the oil until it begins to smoke. Place the roast into the oil and sear each side of the roast for two minutes.
Bake the Roast
Transfer the roast to a rack in a shallow baking pan. Put the baking pan into a preheated oven. After 60 to 90 minutes of cooking, add the vegetables to the pan. Cook uncovered for a total of 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or until an instant-read meat thermometer reaches 135 degrees for medium rare. The temperature will continue to rise another 10 degrees after removing it from the oven. Top round tends to get tough if you cook it beyond medium rare, but if you choose, cook it to 145 degrees for medium.
Deglaze the skillet. Add butter and water or broth to the skillet and heat it over a medium high heat. Use a spatula to scrape the bottom of the skillet to remove pan drippings. Reduce the liquid by half and then reserve it to serve with the roast.
Transfer the roast to a plate. Tent the roast loosely with tin foil and let it rest for 15 to 20 minutes. This gives the juices time to redistribute evenly throughout the roast.
Reheat and then drizzle the deglazing liquid over the roast. Cut the roast into thin slices to serve.