The Manual - Carve beef like a pro

Use a quality knife. I recommend Swiss Victorinox or Japanese Global knives. They're both excellent quality and easy to maintain, unlike some German brands, which are made from very hard steel that is tough to sharpen.

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Take your time. Always allow the beef to rest for at least 30min in a warm place before carving. This gives the juices a chance to relax back into the meat. If you carve your joint immediately, the juice will run straight out, leaving your meat dry and tough.

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Carve across the grain of the beef with long slices and a light hand on the knife. Pick the perfect thickness - about 3mm - not too thick, as the slice should be tender, and not too thin as you want the slice to retain its juices.

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Choose the right joint. Topside and sirloin are the easiest to carve at the table, as you just cut them straight down. Rump and rib are delicious in flavour and sweeter, because they are on the bone, but they are also tougher to carve.

Words by Adam Peirson, senior chef de partie at Claridge's Hotel.

Illustration by Nick Hardcastle.