Friday, December 30, 2011

Pot Roast!!

I made my first pot roast for Christmas dinner. It was a hunk-a hunk-a chunky meat that turned out sooooo good. I thought that I would do a rub on it a couple of days beforehand, but time simply ran out. Instead, I found a bunch of stuff in the fridge, threw it on top of the meat and cooked it 'til it was done.

Yep. It was that simple; and the damned thing is going to feed us for a loooong tiiime.

Here's the recipe for the Pot Roast:
1 big chunk of beef. I talked to my butcher and found that a boneless chuck would be best for my needs. About 5lbs.
Salt & pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
Beef stock (enough to almost cover the meat when it's in the roasting pan/crock pot
1 yellow onion, quartered
1/2 fennel bulb, halfed
10 pepper corns
2 tsp fennel seed
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup balsamic vinaigre
1lb potatoes (I used fingerlings, but quartered New potatoes or Yukon golds would be great too.)

Cooking Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 350º

Rub the meat generously with salt & freshly cracked pepper. In a heavy-bottomed pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat just until the smoking point. Add the meat and sear it on all sides until it is nutty brown (four minutes or so each side). After seared, remove the meat from the pan and set to one side for a moment.

Then, poor the beef stock in the pan to deglaze it, scraping all of the tasty brown bits off of the bottom (that's where a lot of flavor lives.) Return the meat to the pan, then add the rest of the ingredients.

Bring the mixture up to a simmer on the stove top, cover, then cook it in the oven for three to four hours. Check it after 2 1/2 hours to see where it is in the cooking process as cooking times will vary depending on the size and cut of meat that you've chosen.

Serving Instructions:
Frankly, I was so distracted by my dinner company that I have forgotten what I served as sides. Let's say that I made the most incredible sauteed greens and I baked fresh bread with my two hands that day, and that I am actually that amazing. All I know it that when the pot roast was done I served up chunks of the tender, flavorful meat and the table got quiet; a sure sign that dinner is good.

With muffled, food-filled mouths and happy tummies, Lorelei and I wish you...

Happy new year and Santé

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