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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Pot Roast

I have written many  times about Pot Roasts. I still get questions about how to do them and how to make sure that they are tender and juicy. So here is refresher course in time for Fall and Winter meals.

The most important thing to remember is low and slow.  Pot Roast is usually a tough cut of meat with lots of connective tissue which needs to break down. That takes a low heat for a long time.

Next BROWN the meat!!  Sear on all sides for a great taste and wonderful gravy.

Add veggies to eat during the last hour.

This recipe is from the first cookbook

POT ROAST
The important thing about a pot roast is the technique. Once you learn how to cook a good pot roast you can adapt the method for a myriad of other recipes.  This technique is braising.
TIP: BROWN THE MEAT! DO NOT PUT THE MEAT IN THE PAN IF IT IS WET OR THE PAN IS NOT HOT.  BROWNED FOOD TASTES BETTER!
INGREDIENTS
Chuck Roast - 4 – 6 pounds
Kosher Salt                             Pepper
Olive Oil
1-2  Onions                 2 cloves of garlic – minced or pressed
2-3 carrots                  
Beef broth 2 – 3 cups – hot
Bay leaf
Spring of thyme
Heat the pan (Use a good Dutch Oven or one with a lid that is oven safe)
When the pan is hot add the olive oil. Wait a few seconds for the oil to heat.  Make sure the roast will fit and that it is DRY.  Salt and pepper the roast and put the season side down.  If you do not hear a good sizzle, the pan was not hot enough.  Leave the meat to cook on the first side for at least 5 – 10 minutes. Salt and pepper the meat on the side that is not cooking.  Prepare the rest while you wait.
Peal the carrots and cut each one into six pieces.  Rough chop the onion.  Turn the meat over and brown the other side.  Once the meat is browned take the meat out of the pan set on a plate while you add the carrots and onions.  Cook the carrots and onions for at least 3 – 5 minutes and then add the garlic. Add the meat back to the pan along with any juices that have accumulated.  Slowly add the beef broth until the meat is covered.  Add the bay leaf and the thyme.  Cover the pot and put it in a 275 over for at least 3 hours.  The longer the better.  When you are ready to serve, take the meat and vegetable out, retrieve the spices and make the gravy,
Pot Roast Gravy
3- 4 ounces butter
3- 4 ounces flour
Make a roux by cooking the butter and flour in small skillet over medium heat until the raw flour taste is gone.  Taste the liquid from the pot roast.  It may need to be reduced.  One you have done that, slowly add the roux to the hot liquid while whisking to make sure there are no lumps.  Taste gravy and adjust for seasoning.