There are many ways to tie a roast. Some methods are easier than others, and this method is the proven quickest!
Roasts are tied for two reasons: 1) to keep the roast in an aesthetically pleasing round shape; and 2) to hold stuffing inside of the roast. We used a pork loin to highlight this method, however, most cuts of meat can be tied this way (even a boned chicken thigh and stuffed fish!).
1. To tie a roast, you will need both the meat and a long stretch of butcher’s twine. If you are unclear how much twine will be necessary for tying the roast, use the entire ball or package of twine and cut the twine off only when you have finished tying the roast. Place the roast on a flat surface perpendicular to your body. Hold the twine taut by both ends and slide the twine underneath the roast until it reaches one end of the meat.
2. Pull the string very tightly around one end of the roast and make a square knot. If the knot is too loose, the muscle will relax and gravity will cause the roast to form into an oval shape. If the knot is too tight, desirable juices may seep out of the meat. Make sure there is ample twine on one side of the knot.
3. Lay the string so it rests along the length of the roast. Place your thumb on the string one inch from the first knot (or the last tie made). With your thumb holding the string firmly, wrap the string around the roast. Lift the corner you just created at your thumb and pass the end of string under the lifted piece. Pull the string upwards to tighten the hold.
4. Continue the process of wrapping and tying outlined in step 3 until the roast is completely tied. Once the entire roast has been tied, it should be round in shape and feel very tight. If the roast isn’t tight, tighten the entire roast by tightening each tie, beginning with the first tie made (excluding the knot). Once the roast feels secure, wrap the string around the roast lengthwise until the string reaches the original knot.
5. Pass the end of the string underneath the knot, and pull tightly. Do not pull too tightly, as pulling too tightly will cause the roast to form into a U shape. Only pull tight enough to keep the last loop on the roast from slipping. Tie another knot in the string to secure the work done.
6. The roast is ready for cooking! Note: if you are tying a stuffed roast, as you make and tighten the ties some stuffing might be pushed outwards. Push the stuffing back into the newly tightened area of the roast with your fingers and continue on.
Are you interested in making a stuffed roast? Experiment with this recipe: