St. Luke the Evangelist

Cooking Through the Christian Year


Agostino Veneziano (Agostino dei Musi), and Giulio Romano. Saint Luke. ca. 1514–36. Engraving. The Elisha Whittelsey Collection. The Elisha Whittelsey Fund, 1951. 9 9/16 x 7 1/16 in. (24.3 x 18.0 cm). New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Saint Luke the Evangelist – October 18th

No one wrote more of the New Testament than Luke, not even Paul. The evangelist was the author of not only the Gospel that bears his name but also the Acts of the Apostles. He serves as a bridge between Paul’s life and letters and Jesus’ life in the Gospels.

One fascinating thing that occurs in the middle of the Book of Acts is that Luke starts using the word “we.” This has led scholars to believe that he was from Troas, a city built around the ancient city of Troy, and was a missionary with Paul, likely serving as the mission team’s physician (Col 4:14). Luke is probably the only gentile author of the New Testament, and his mission, like his teacher Paul, was to bring the Gospel to the gentiles.

Since he wrote so much, we can gain a sense of his personality. His account is “orderly,” showing us that he had an almost modern sense of journalism, conducting interviews with eyewitnesses and preachers. But Luke is not only known for having the greatest attention to detail but also for being the most artistic and even musical. His Gospel is filled with musical interludes, like Mary’s song, adding a special beauty to his story. It is not surprising that Luke is both the patron saint of medicine and art. Tradition says that he interviewed the Virgin Mary for his project and painted the first icon of her. Luke’s symbol is the evangelist symbol of the winged bull, likely because of his focus on the temple and worship there.

To celebrate this evangelist, we are having roast beef, paired with sour cakes, a Celtic tradition of ancient origin. Elderly women would gather in a circle around a fire rolling the dough extra thin and then pass it to the “queen,” who would carefully transfer it for toasting over the fire. Our recipe is a little simpler than that.

Roast Beef with Sour Cakes

Roast Beef with Sour Cakes

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  • Roast Beef Ingredients
  • 1 1 beef eye round roast, about 3 to 4 pounds

  • 2 tablespoon 2 olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons 2 black pepper

  • 2 tablespoons 2 salt

  • 1 tablespoon 1 rosemary, finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon 1 thyme, finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon 1 parsley, finely chopped

  • 13" x 9" 13" x 9" disposable aluminum roasting pan

  • Horseradish cream sauce

  • Oat Cake Ingredients
  • 2 cups 2 (8 oz/225g) oatmeal (processed medium to fine)

  • 1/4 tsp 1/4 baking soda

  • 1 pinch 1 salt

  • 6 tbsp 6 hot water, plus more, as needed

  • 1 tbsp 1 butter melted


  • Roast Beef Instructions
  • Pat the beef dry with paper towels. Rub olive oil all over the roast and season with salt and pepper.
  • Combine rosemary, thyme, and parsley in a small bowl. Sprinkle the herb mixture all over the roast, using your hands to pat it into the beef. Wrap the roast tightly in plastic wrap and let marinate for 6 – 12 hours or overnight.
  • Light a chimney full of charcoal. When the charcoal is covered with gray ash, pour out and arrange the coals on one side of the charcoal grate. Place cooking grate, cover grill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Place beef on the hot side of the grill and cook until well browned on all sides, about 10 minutes.
  • Move beef to an aluminum roasting pan and place on the cool side of the grill. Cover and cook until an instant read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the beef reads 125°F for medium-rare or 130°F for medium, about 40 to 60 minutes more.
  • Remove from the grill and let the meat rest for 15 minutes. Carve and serve with horseradish cream sauce.
  • Oat Cake Instructions
  • Preheat the oven to 325°F and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  • If you have a food processor, process the oatmeal until it is medium or fine sized.
  • Place all dry ingredients into a large bowl and make a well in the center. Add the melted butter and mix into the dry ingredients adding the hot water, a little at a time, as you mix. Continue adding water until a dough starts to form.
  • Once you have a dough, roll into a ball and wrap in cling film. Refrigerate the dough for half an hour
  • Thinly roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface and cut with a cookie cutter.
  • Place on the parchment lined baking tray and bake for 30 – 45 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.
  • Cool on a wire rack. Enjoy with cheese and fresh herbs.