I miss having a regular sunday night dinner with the fam, and try and invite friends over as much as possible. tonight I bribed mike and jen (ok, I bribed Mike. I just have to make sure I keep chocolate in stock and I think Jen will be happy) over by ordering the sens vs. pens on pay-per-view, and cooked up a pot roast. there was also a fairly straight-forward salad and a fresh baguette to provide a little texture, and a spinach-artichoke dip as an appetizer to keep us from starving until the roast was ready.
1 x 4-6lb roast (sirloin tip works nicely, should be tied every inch or so)
10 large carrots
9 celery ribs (cut to length of carrots)
1lb red pearl onions, peeled
1lb baby red potatoes (about 20)
12-16 garlic, peeled and sliced lengthwise
1.5 cups red wine
1.5 cups water
1 small can tomato paste
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp essence (see below)
- Preheat oven to 400F
- with a sharp paring knife, make 24-32 1.5″ deep slits over the surface of the roast. insert a piece of sliced garlic in each slit
- mix essence, chili powder, salt, and pepper together in a bowl or ziploc bag. rub all over roast, including both ends
- heat olive oil in large skillet on med-high (just below smoking), and sear coated roast until browned on all sides (7-10min)
- lay carrots and celery ribs (alternating) crosswise in a roasting pan, creating a bed for the roast. add potatoes around the outside of the roasting pan, and spread the pearl onions around last. you should have a fairly uniform bed of veggies. top veggies with essence and pepper (no salt is required, honest)
- place the roast centered in the roasting pan on top of the veggie bed
- mix the wine, water, and tomato paste together. pour over top of the roast
- cover and seal the roasting pan with aluminum foil. NB: do not use the roasting pan lid, as it will not form an adequate seal and you’ll lose a lot of the roasting liquid. this is bad. pop the roast in the oven, and cook for 90 minutes.
- remove the roast from the oven, and reduce the heat to 350. baste the roast with the pan juices and return to the oven (re-covering and sealing the pan with the aluminum foil). continue to cook for approximately two hours, basting every 30 minutes.
- remove roast from the oven, baste, and let stand for 10-15 minutes (now’s a good time to make a salad, yorkshire pudding, whatever)
- carve and serve. NB: the garlic pieces will be completely cooked and will have a much sweeter taste, so you will not need to hunt them down and pull them from the roast.
Essence (inspired by that Bam! guy, Emeril)
Use fresh spices. They make a huge difference.
2.5 tbsp paprika
1.5 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp fresh-ground pepper (I use a lemon peppercorn mix)
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp cayenne
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tbsp dried thyme
1 tsp cumin (not too much, or it’s overpowering)
Mix together and store in an air-tight container.