Sunday, January 22, 2006

Old Fashioned Pot Roast & variations

Although this takes several hours to cook, it takes very little time to prepare. You could also cook this in a crock pot. Variations of this recipe follow.

1 2-3 lb chuck roast
2 onions, sliced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 carrot, sliced
1-2 tbl tomato paste
1 tsp thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp rosemary
3-4 tbl olive oil
2-3 tbl flour (optional)
1/2 cup dry vermouth or white wine (optional)
2 cans beef stock, preferably salt-free or 1 can beef stock & 1 can french onion soup
salt & pepper

Optional vegetables if you want a one pot meal:
3 Idaho potatoes, quartered
3 carrots, sliced lengthwise & halved

Heat oil in dutch oven. Salt and pepper meat and brown it on medium high heat about 5 minutes per side. Remove to plate, reduce heat, and add onions & carrots, sauteing for about 5 minutes. If you want a thick gravy add the flour and cook 3 more minutes. Add tomato paste & garlic and saute 2 more minutes. Add the wine and 1 can of stock stirring and scraping up the brown bits. Season roast with thyme and rosemary and return to pot. Add enough stock or soup to come about halfway up the roast. Add the bay leaf. Taste and add a pinch of salt if needed (The stock will reduce so don't add too much now.) Bake,covered in a 350 degree oven for 2 to 3 hours. Check halfway through to make sure there still is plenty of liquid in the pot. If you are cooking the optional veg, add them about 40 minutes before the roast is done. Otherwise, serve this with mashed potatoes.

Italian Pot Roast

Omit thyme & bay
Increase rosemary to 1 tsp
Add 2 tsp basil
Add 1 tsp oregano
Add 1 can chopped or crushed tomatoes
Omit dry vermouth & substitute red wine
Omit optional vegetables

Serve with fusilli tossed with butter and parmesean or polenta or smashed potatoes with garlic.

Mexican Pot Roast or Ropa Vieja

Omit thyme, bay, and rosemary
Add 1/2 tsp oregano
Add 1 tsp cumin
Add 1 can Rotel
Omit optional vegetables

To make Ropa vieja (old clothes), shred the meat before serving.

Serve w/ tortillas, corn, hominy or rice.

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