Saturday, February 21, 2009

The BEST pot roast ever!

Ok so I think I have found THE best pot roast ever! It's from Ina Garten and truly is just wonderful. Important note, if you can't find chuck roast then use a meat that has a lot of marbling. This will make your meat so incredibly moist you can't believe it. I have enough sauce left over I'm making a soup tomorrow. Seriously this is a GREAT recipe!


1 (4 to 5-pound) prime boneless beef chuck roast, tied
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
All-purpose flour
Good olive oil
2 cups chopped carrots (4 carrots)
2 cups chopped yellow onions (2 onions)
2 cups chopped celery (4 stalks) 2 cups chopped leeks, white and light green parts (2 to 4 leeks) 5 large garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
2 cups good red wine, such as Burgundy
2 tablespoons Cognac or brandy
1 (28-ounce) can whole plum tomatoes in puree
1 cup chicken stock, preferably homemade
1 chicken bouillon cube
3 branches fresh thyme
2 branches fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Pat the beef dry with a paper towel. Season the roast all over with 1 tablespoon salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper. Dredge the whole roast in flour, including the ends. In a large Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the roast and sear for 4 to 5 minutes, until nicely browned. Turn and sear the other side and then turn and sear the ends. This should take 4 to 5 minutes for each side. Remove the roast to a large plate.

Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to the Dutch oven. Add the carrots, onions, celery, leeks, garlic, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper and cook over medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender but not browned. Add the wine and Cognac and bring to a boil. Add the tomatoes, chicken stock, bouillon cube, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Tie the thyme and rosemary together with kitchen string and add to the pot. Put the roast back into the pot, bring to a boil, and cover. Place in the oven for 2 1/2 hours, until the meat is fork tender or about 160 degrees F internally. Turn the heat down to 250 degrees F after about an hour to keep the sauce at a simmer.

Remove the roast to a cutting board. Remove the herb bundle and discard. Skim off as much fat as possible from the sauce. Transfer half the sauce and vegetables to a blender or a food processor fitted with the steel blade and puree until smooth. Pour the puree back into the pot, place on the stovetop over low heat, and return the sauce to a simmer. Place 2 tablespoons flour and the butter in a small bowl and mash them together with a fork. Stir into the sauce and simmer for 2 minutes, stirring until thickened. Taste for seasonings. Remove the strings from the roast, and slice the meat.

Serve warm with the sauce spooned over it.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Beef Bourbon Noodle Bowl

Well it sounded intriguing. I do love soups and all the flavors they provide. This was from Cuisine at Home magazine.

I must say when it calls to marinate the beef in 1/4 cup bourbon and 1/4 cup maple syrup and 2 TBL minced garlic I had reservations. The rest of the ingredients were noodles, sweet potato, spinach and onions.

Well while it looked very nice I just could not get past the maple syrup smell. It was all I could taste. So I've decided that I'm going to marinate the meat next time in a mixture of soy and ginger beer along with the garlic. I did end up adding low sodium soy after serving and that did help.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Veggie Fried Rice

I love fried rice. But when you add a lot of veggies you have a great meal.

Fried Rice (I cook my rice the day before and chill it really good before doing this recipe)

2 Tbs. canola oil

1 cup peeled, finely diced broccoli stems (from about 1-1/4 lb. broccoli)

3/4 cup finely diced carrots

3/4 cup finely diced red bell pepper

3/4 cup frozen shelled edamame

3/4 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen

4 scallions (both white and green parts), thinly sliced

2 Tbs. finely grated fresh ginger

2 large cloves garlic, minced

4 cups very cold cooked brown rice

3/4 cup finely diced Canadian bacon (4 oz.)(you could use left over chicken, pork or leave it out all together for a total vegetarian dish)

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1/4 cup lower-sodium soy sauce

Heat all but 1 tsp. of the oil in a large nonstick skillet or stir-fry pan over medium-high heat. Add the broccoli stems, carrots, and bell pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables begin to soften, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the edamame and corn and cook until the edamame is thawed, about 1 minute. Add the scallion, ginger, and garlic and cook, stirring, until the raw garlic aroma subsides, about 1 minute. Add the rice and Canadian bacon and cook, stirring, until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes.Make a 3-inch well in the center of the rice mixture. Add the remaining 1 tsp. oil, then the eggs, and cook, stirring, until the eggs are almost fully scrambled. Stir the eggs into the rice mixture. Stir in the soy sauce and serve.