Thursday, January 10, 2013

Pot Roast

Are you obsessed with Pinterest? It seems that everyone is. A year ago, I was one of those people. I thought I could use it as a way to promote things on my blog but the boards that I don't care about (Funny Shit, Dream Kitchen Spaces) have the most followers and my children (Food, France) don't have as many. I'm okay with this. In this photo-centric world of Pinterest, Tastespotting, FoodGawker and others, I don't need validation from people I don't know to tell me my craft is acceptable. Beauty is fleeting, knowledge lasts forever...

On that note, Pot Roast is another one of those items that I think everyone should know how to cook. It's simple like roasted chicken, economical, easily customizable and in the age of crock-pot recipes coming back into fashion, it fits the bill perfectly.
 
Photo courtesy: The Way The Cookie Crumbles
There are quite a few prime cuts of meat used for pot roast. These cuts have less fat and are best cooked by long, slow cooking with liquid ( called braising)--This tenderizes the meat fibers. Common cuts used for pot roast include: chuck, brisket, top round, bottom round and rump. Ask your butcher for his or her suggestion for the best cut.

The following recipe is NOT made in a crock-pot, but you could make it in one if you wish. 

Pot Roast
Serves 6-8

    3 1/2 lb of beef shoulder or boneless chuck roast
    2 Tbsp olive or safflower oil
    Salt, pepper, italian seasoning to taste
    2 large white or yellow onions, julienne, about 4 cups sliced onion
    4 cloves of garlic, peeled
    1 cup of red or white wine
    32 oz beef stock or water
    1 bay leaf
    Several carrots, peeled and cut lengthwise
    1 lb Brussels sprouts, fresh
    1 lb white mushrooms, sliced
    2 Russet potatoes, cubed (optional; it tends to fall apart but it thickens the gravy without extra flour)

If using the oven, preheat to 350°F. Pat the roast dry with paper towels. Sprinkle and rub salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning all over the meat. Use a thick-bottomed pot with a lid (oven-proof, optional) and heat 2 Tbsp of oil on medium high heat. Brown roast in pot, all over, 4-5 minutes on each side. Don't move the roast while a side is browning, or it won't brown well.

Sizzle, sizzle... Look at that hunk of beef!


When roast is browned, remove from pan and set aside to rest. Add the onions to the pan and cook for about 5 to 10 minutes, until they begin to brown. Add the garlic, carrots and all of the other vegetables on top of the onions. Set the roast on top of the vegetables. Add 1 cup of wine and stock or water. Add the bay leaf. Cover. Bring to simmer* and then adjust the heat to low, while still maintaining a simmer when covered. Cook for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, or longer, until meat is tender.


Caramelizing of the onions


The vegetables.

Finished product!
*If you wish to make this dish in the oven, preheat it at 350°F before browning the roast. Place the pot in the over at the start temp for 20 minutes, then drop the temperature to 225°F. For crock-pot-lovers, 6-8 hours on low or 2-3 hours on high.

2 comments:

The Captain's Daughter said...

Beautiful roast, Nikki!

Cannot wait to see you on television this weekend! Remember to post the link/information either here or your Facebook so that I'll know when to tune in!

xo

Nikki said...

I hope you enjoyed, Janet!

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