Monday, September 13, 2010

Roast Beef Dinner...aka...what I would request for my last meal...PART 1

Roast beef, or rather, hot roast beef, with mashed potatoes, gravy, corn, carrots, and really good crusty bread is my all-time favorite meal ever. Ever ever. You might hear me say that a lot because I have a lot of favorite meals, but this is one that is consistently bouncing between turkey dinner, spaghetti, and pizza, all four trading places depending on what one I'm eating that second, and how good that batch turned out.

So here it is. My super-not-secret-or-very-complicated recipe for a roast beef dinner, with all of the fixings.

Here's what you need to get started...

  • 2-4 lbs boneless chuck shoulder roast, as described below
  • 1 lbs carrots, peeled and cut into large chunks diagonally
  • 1 large onion, peeled and sliced in half
  • Red wine, whatever kind floats your boat as long as it doesn't start with Boone's Farm or Arbor Mist
  • Seasoning salt
  • Garlic powder
  • Pepper
  • *make sure you see the latter parts of this series before making out your grocery list. There will be more ingredients to come!

First, buy a roast, anywhere from 2-4 pounds is good. You want a shoulder chuck roast, with lots of marbling, but not many huge veins of fat visible. If in doubt, have the butcher help you pick out a good one. Its all about the cut, so they tell me.

Next, peel your carrots, cut off the ends, cut them diagonally, and the thicker ones in half vertically as well (you are aiming for lots of surface area to brown on the stove here). Toss them into a heated frying pan with a few TBSP of oil in it (anything but olive, which has too low of a smoke point for this).

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Let these cook for a while before stirring them at all. You want color. Nice brown color, on as many sides as possible. Make sure you don't get black though. Black is not good. When the carrots are almost done browning, toss the onion in and brown it on the three cut sides.

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Remove all of that from the pan and set it aside. Put the seasoned, thawed roast in the pan and don't touch it for 2-3 minutes. You want color, again, nice brown, lovely color. Flip it over and brown the other side as well.

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After the roast is browned take about 1/2 - 1 cup of red wine and pour into the pan.

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Let that simmer a minute or two and then carefully move roast and all juices/wine into a roasting pan. BE CAREFUL not to just try and plop them all in there at once, thinking it will be just fine, because you might end up with your kitchen looking like this...

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and this...

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You want this...but without the mess...

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Put the cover on, and stick that in a 300 degree oven and forget about it for at least 3 hours. Do not peek. Do not open the oven, and especially do not open the cover of the roaster.

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