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Crock Pot Pot Roast

 
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Amarante




 
 
 
 

Post Sun, Oct 31 2021, 4:07 pm
Searing the meat and the savories and not just plopping them into the crock pot really enhances the flavor. There are slow cookers that also sear meat and those definitely make things go faster.

If you can't add the veggies half way through, there is a neat trick that stops them from overcooking.

Cook's Illustrated has an easy way to keep root vegetables from becoming soggy & overcooked after 8 hours in a slow cooker: instead of combining them with the meat, make a packet out of aluminum foil, put in the vegies and a bit of the wine mixture and a bit of the herbs, salt & pepper. Seal up the foil packet and place it ON TOP of the meat in the slow cooker. Cover & cook as normal. When done just open the packet (carefully, it's hot!) and mix in with the meat. Perfect veggies every time!

Keep in mind that if you keep the veggies in the tin packet instead of adding them half way through you wouldn't get the flavor of the veggies cooked with the stew. You can make then make it a bit more flavorful by adding a bit of tomato paste and Dijon mustard when sautéing You can also add a bit more vinegar as well as some soy sauce if desired.

Cook's Illustrated has an easy way to keep root vegetables from becoming soggy & overcooked after 8 hours in a slow cooker: instead of combining them with the meat, make a packet out of aluminum foil, put in the veggies and a bit of the wine mixture and a bit of the herbs, salt & pepper. Seal up the foil packet and place it ON TOP of the meat in the slow cooker. Cover & cook as normal. When done just open the packet (carefully, it's hot!) and mix in with the meat. Perfect vegies every time!

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE POT ROAST:

* 4 pounds beef chuck roast, cut into 3 chunks
* Kosher salt and black pepper
* 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
* 7 ounces frozen pearl onions (or 1 yellow or red onion, peeled and cut into wedges)
* 6 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled - I added double
* 1 ½ cups dry red wine
* 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
* 5 fresh woody herb sprigs, such as thyme, sage or rosemary (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme, sage or rosemary)
* 1 to 1 ½ pounds peeled root vegetables, such as a mix of carrots and parsnips, cut into 2-inch chunks
* 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature (optional) - this is to make the gravy so sub margarine
* 2 tablespoons flour (optional)

FOR THE PICKLED ONIONS (OPTIONAL):

* 1 cup red wine vinegar
* 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
* 7 ounces frozen pearl onions (or 1 yellow or red onion, peeled and thinly sliced)
* Kosher salt

PREPARATION

1. Season the beef generously all over with about 1 heaping tablespoon salt. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add one chunk of the beef and sear on one side, undisturbed, until deeply browned, 5 minutes. Using tongs, remove the first chunk and place it in a 6- to 8-quart slow cooker. Repeat with the second and third pieces, searing one side and then placing the beef in the slow cooker. (You can certainly brown more than one side of each chunk, but one side is enough to build flavor without spending too much time on this step.)

2. Add the pearl onions and garlic to the skillet. Season lightly with salt and generously with pepper and cook, stirring, until just softened, 3 minutes. Pour in the red wine, vinegar and 1/2 cup water. Scrape up the browned bits with a wooden spoon or spatula and let the mixture come to a bubble. Tip the mixture into the slow cooker, and add the herbs. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours. If you want to up the flavor, add some tomato paste, Dijon mustard, soy at this point.

3. Make the pickled onions, if desired: Bring the vinegar and the sugar to a boil in a small saucepan over high. Add the pearl onions and a generous pinch of salt. Cook, stirring, to dissolve the sugar and warm the onions through, about 1 minute, then remove from heat. Set aside at room temperature to pickle until ready to serve, at least 1 hour. (Ideally, make the pickled onions in the morning, when you prep the dish. You could even make them up to 5 days ahead and store them in a sealed container in the refrigerator.)

4. Uncover the slow cooker, flip the pieces of beef with tongs, and add the root vegetables, pushing them under the liquid. Cover and cook on low until the beef and vegetables are both very tender, an additional 4 to 5 hours. Check to see if the meat is tender by testing it with a fork; it should be juicy and flavorful, and pull apart easily. If the meat is not yet tender, cover and cook another 1 to 2 hours. (The amount of time can depend upon the leanness or fattiness of your cut, or how hot your slow cooker runs.) Using tongs and a slotted spoon, remove the beef and vegetables to a serving platter. Break the beef into large chunks to serve. Drizzle some cooking liquid over the top of the beef and vegetables, and top with drained pickled onions to serve. Discard the remaining cooking liquid or strain it, refrigerate it, discard the fat and freeze the remaining liquid as beef stock.

5. If you’d prefer a thicker gravy, strain the cooking liquid into a medium pot and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, combine the butter and flour in a small bowl and knead it together with your fingers until it is uniform, almost like a dough. Once the liquid is boiling, drop the butter-flour mixture into the pot, whisking well to combine. Let it bubble until it is lightly thickened, about 5 minutes, then drizzle some gravy over the pot roast and vegetables, and top with the drained, pickled onions. Serve extra gravy on the side.
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