Monday, 25 June 2012

Superior Pot Roast

I can never come up with snappy recipe names, so I just calls 'em like I sees 'em.  What works well about this recipe is a two-step cooking process that makes the meat fall-apart tender and a savoury, rich gravy.  On this occasion I made the recipe for half, since the chuck roast I got at Swingle's was only about two pounds, but no matter - it still worked perfectly.

Superior Pot Roast

2 tablespoons butter
1 4-pound rump or chuck roast
2 onions, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 large carrots, sliced
3 bay leaves
5 garlic cloves, chopped
about 25 whole peppercorns
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon thyme
2+ cups beef stock or broth
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 325F.  In a large oven-safe pot with a lid or a Dutch oven, melt the butter and sear all sides of the roast until browned, 2-3 minutes per side.  Transfer roast to a plate.

Add the onion, celery, garlic, bay leaves, peppercorns, thyme, tomato paste, and Worcestershire sauce to the pot.  Saute over high heat until onion starts to brown.  Return meat to the pot and add 2 cups beef stock and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Cover the pot and put it in the oven to bake for about 4 hours, until the meat can be easily torn apart.  Baste with juices every half hour or so.  Next, remove meat from the pot and strain the stock into a bowl, squeezing out as much of the juice as you can.  Put the meat back in the pot and shred it into pieces using two forks.  Pour the strained stock over it, adding a little more beef broth if it doesn't seem like you have  enough.  Add carrots and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.  Cover the pot and bake in the oven again for another 40-50 minutes.

Serve with mashed or roast potatoes, or crusty bread.

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