So those of you in New England know we had a pretty crappy weekend weather wise. I figured it was time to break out a recipe that I loved in the past, Company Pot Roast. I stole this from a wonderful blog called Ezra Pound Cake who stole it from Ina on the Food Network. I would like to offer a few suggestions for how to make it better. I followed the recipe below and it was very good but I recall that I combined the recipe from America’s Test Kitchen and that was the best Pot Roast ever. The change I would suggest after removing the meat from the dutch oven drain the sauce and then cook vegetables separately. This recipe calls for using the vegetables as a thickener and it was a little too stew like for my taste and the vegetables after being cooked for 3ish hours were way too mushy to provide anything. My suggestion take it or leave it. It was great otherwise. I will be trying to my way the next time and will keep you posted.
Company Pot Roast
- 1 (4 to 5-pound) prime (or choice) boneless beef chuck roast, tied
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- All-purpose flour, for dredging
- Olive oil
- 2 cups chopped carrots (4 carrots)
- 2 cups chopped yellow onions (2 onions)
- 2 cups chopped celery (4 stalks)
- 2 cups chopped leeks, white and light green parts (2 to 4 leeks)
- 5 large garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 2 cups good red wine, such as Burgundy
- 2 tablespoons Cognac or brandy
- 1 (28-ounce) can whole plum tomatoes in puree
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 3 branches fresh thyme
- 2 branches fresh rosemary
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Place the tied beef in a large baking dish, and pat it dry with a paper towel. Season it roast all over with 1 tablespoon kosher salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper. Dredge the whole roast in flour, including the ends.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the roast, and sear it on one side for 4 to 5 minutes, until it’s nicely browned. Using a carving fork, turn and sear the other side of the beef. Then brown the ends.
- Using the carving fork or a wide, heavy-duty spatula, transfer the roast to a large plate. (Be careful not to scrape the seared crust off of your meat.)
- Return to the Dutch oven, and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the carrots, onions, celery, leeks, garlic, 1 tablespoon kosher salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper. Cook the vegetables over medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are tender but not browned.
- Add the wine and Cognac. Bring the mixture to a boil.
- Add the tomatoes, chicken stock, 2 teaspoons kosher salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Tie the thyme and rosemary together with kitchen string, and add them to the pot.
- Put the roast back into the Dutch oven, bring everything to a boil, and cover the pot.
- The Dutch oven will be heavy, so carefully lift the pot and slide it into the oven. After 1 hour, turn the heat down to 250 degrees F to keep the sauce at a simmer. Let the meat cook for another hour, and start checking it for doneness. The meat should be fork tender (or about 160 degrees F) after a total of 2 to 2-1/2 hours spent in the oven.
- Transfer the roast to a cutting board. Tent it loosely with foil to keep it warm.
- Remove the herb bundle from the pot, and throw it away.
- Let the liquid in the pot settle for about 5 minutes. Then, using a wide spoon, skim off as much fat as possible from the sauce. Transfer half the sauce and vegetables to a blender or a food processor fitted with the steel blade, and puree until smooth. (Or, use an immersion blender directly in the Dutch oven.) Pour the puree back into the pot, place the pot on the stovetop over low heat, and return the sauce to a simmer.
- Place 2 tablespoons of flour and 1 tablespoon of butter in a small bowl, and mash them together with a fork. Stir the mixture into the sauce and simmer for 2 minutes, stirring until thickened. Taste for seasonings.
- Remove the strings from the roast, and slice the meat. Serve warm with the sauce spooned over it.
Post Oven with a side of Asparagus
Sorry for the lack of pictures I was trying to cook and fit all this in with the Patriots game and I lost track of things. Next time we will do a better job.