Thursday, June 16, 2011

Pot Roast




Roast always reminds me of my mum and festive time during my younger days. We always looked forward to it …tender and juicy slices of meat…mmm. I loved it because it could be eaten with potatoes and veggie or with rice and sambal blachan (A Malaysian hot chillie condiment)..heheheh….or as a cold cut or made into lovely sandwiches. There are a few ways of preparing Roast..and my mum used to make it in the oven…..but lately she has been doing pot roast which turns out pretty well too. You can do it in a dutch oven (thick cast iron pot), crock pot, an electric multicooker using the slow cook mode or even any deep thick walled pot over low flame, slow cooking it. I used a panasonic multi cooker. I cannot seem to find the pic over the web but it looks very similar to the Sanyo 3 in 1 multi cook as shown below. 
Two important things to know about Roast is to know your cuts of meat and also how to prepare it before roasting. 

The cut that is good for pot roast is not great for oven roast. Normally if you are using the oven, bone-in rib roast works the best, in terms of flavor and tenderness. For Pot roast, you can use any chuck part or rump -- just ask your local butcher and he will know which it is. By the time I went to the supermarket, there was nothing left except 2 pieces of chuck tender (total of about 3lbs)..so I just grabbed both. Beef chuck mock tender is cut from above the blade bone. It is naturally boneless, consisting of a single tapering muscle with minimal fat. It is usually prepared by braising.

Traditionally, the easy way is to add in cut potatoes, onions and carrots (To give it a nice flavor) and then the flavouring is really up to the individual taste. You can add in a can of mushroom soup and a packet of onion soup mix or you can just add a mixture of different sauces such as worchesteshire etc. I gave a little Malaysian touch to it by adding in a ball of sup bunjut  (mixed spices wrapped and tied in a muslin cloth) You may add in a Bay Leaf for an added herb flavour :)

Pot Roast

3-4 lbs chuck roast or rump.
2 Large yellow onions quartered or chopped 
garlic - I use quite a bit because i love it and it's good!
chopped parsely 
1 can mushroom soup. (optional, but I used only half a can)
2 Potatoes quartered (I cut them into smaller cubes)
2 carrots cubed or sliced thick
Some sliced mushrooms (optional but added yummy flavour - white button)
2 medium tomatoes quartered. (I used a few halved cherry tomatoes)
1 sup bunjut ball OR few cloves, 1 cinnamon stick  (kayu manis)  and 1 tsp black pepper seeds.
Worchesteshire sauce for added flavour and color. (personal preference)
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil

1. Wash and wipe dry the meat, rub salt and pepper and then some olive oil, not virgin oil..just normal olive oil.  (Any oil will do really but olive oil is best)
2. Slice garlic and chop parsley. Cut up the potatoes and vegetables into chunks or small cubes to your preference. Quarter the bombay onions. 



3. Sear or brown the meat on all sides - this is to trap its juices and flavor. Aprox  3 minutes on each side. Saute the garlic with whatever remaining oil in pan (Do not add more oil..we do not want the gravy to be oily). 




4. Add the onions and spices, then vegetables. 




5. Add the mushroom soup and just enough water to cover the meat. 
6. Cook on low/slow heat for 2 hours with the lid on, (stiring and turning the meat a couple of times in between)
7. Test your meat…normally it would seem tough on the exterior but when sliced, the inner would be tender and juicy. If you feel it's almost there….just continue cooking without the lid for another 30mins to an hour. 




7. When done, remove meat and slice it just before serving. 




8. You can use the remaining stock/gravy as gravy served separate or spooned over the meat OR you can add a mixture of flour and cornflour with browning sauce to make it into a nice thick brown sauce. 
9. Serve meat with your vegetables over or around it -- You might want to steam or broil some baby carrots and/or broccoli to add to the dish, add baked or mashed potato, or serve it with a mushroom pasta as I did. 

Enjoy! 
xoxoxo 

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