I have never been a cook but honestly, have eaten food my entire life, or as long as I remember anyway. Suddenly in the waning years of my sixth decade, I have had a hankering to develop my culinary skills. Osso Buco and duck confit last week. This weekend's project was a pot roast. My first ever. Good cold, rainy weather food.
I went to Major Market the other day and the wonderful butcher, Julio, picked out the perfect chuck roast that he would use. It was a special cut but I can't remember the exact name. I decided to make a pot roast with root vegetables and ended up using carrots, turnips and organic red potatoes.
My mother was an excellent cook and made a great pot roast but honestly, Leslie is not real keen on them and prefers brisket. I think the memory of her grandmother's dry pot roast still lingers. I asked her to bear with me for one attempt and she was a good sport and acquiesced.
I sort of sampled from two or three pot roast recipes I found online. Basic stuff, nothing fancy. I prepped my vegetables. I then cooked some onion and garlic in olive oil in the dutch oven and then browned the carrots and turnips a bit.
Removing the carrots and turnips I then seared the large hunk of beef, which I had already seasoned with a generous amount of kosher salt and pepper.
I added red wine and bone broth and then deglazed all the precious dark bits on the bottom with a whisk. I added the vegetables back in, poured in a few more cups of broth to halfway cover the meat and stuck it in the oven at 275 degrees for a little over three hours. We added fresh rosemary and a bayleaf as well as some dried thyme, not having any fresh around. Leslie added mushrooms.
Some recipes call for tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce, we decided to skip it. I added six cloves of garlic which were also not called for but we are garlic people and so we did anyway.
It cooked for about two hours and then I added the potatoes, which get mushy if cooked too long. It cooked for another hour and we served.
It was wonderful and my wife loved it too. Needed a bit more salt, which we took care of. Next time if I ever cook turnips again I will wait and put them in with the potatoes as they did get too mushy. I would also add more wine.
But the meal was great nonetheless. Meat falling off the bone and flavorful and the potatoes perfectly done. Carrots caramelized and super sweet. A perfect dinner for a cold January night. Simple. I am sure you all cook these things with regularity and perhaps this is a yawner but it is all new to me.
And there you have it, my first pot roast. With a lot of help from my wife of course.