Sunday, April 12, 2009

Pot Roast

I was trying to think of a clever title for this like "Easy-Peasy Pot Roast" or "You can't screw this up Pot Roast" but in the end I decided to just keep it simple.

This is an easy-peasy recipe that is very difficult to screw up. It's because you cook it in the crock pot, the all forgiving kitchen appliance. It also means you can get a Sunday dinner on the table only 1/2 hour after walking in from church! (And that's because you have to cook the potatoes and vegetables!)

I cook my meat by itself in the crock pot. You can easily add carrots and potatoes if you prefer. Then you could eat in even less time!

You can also vary this recipe easily according to your tastes.

I start by mixing a can of cream of mushroom soup with beef broth. How much you use is up to you - I use two cups usually because I want a lot of gravy. Pour some of this mixture into the bottom of the crock to coat it. Then add your roast - I always use a beef chuck roast. Top with the onions. Pour the rest of the soup mixture over the top. This will make some of the onions fall off - I just pick them back up and put them back on top of the roast.

Cook on low for 8-12 hours. You want the meat to be so tender that when you put a fork in it, you can easily pull a piece off.

If you have to try too hard, it needs to cook longer. The first time you make this, allow at least 10 hours on low - if it's done earlier, you can turn the crock pot to warm, or turn it off. But it doesn't hurt it to be the crock pot longer.

When you're ready to serve it, remove the roast to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm. Use a ladle to get most of the liquid out of the crock and into a saucepan. This will be HOT. Be careful.

At this point, you could put the roast back in the crock pot to keep it warm, if you like.

Bring the liquid in the saucepan to a boil. Combine cornstarch and water - I like to put mine in a jar and shake, shake, shake. Add the thickener slowly while whisking constantly until the liquid becomes gravy, thickening it to your liking. You'll want it to stay boiling the whole time.

Put the roast on a platter. If you want to, you can shred it into chunks for serving with two forks. You should not have to use a knife! Pass the gravy alongside the roast, and get ready to receive compliments!

Pot Roast

1 2-3 pound beef chuck roast
1 can cream of mushroom soup
2 cups beef broth
2 onions, cut into wedges
3 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 cup water

Combine mushroom soup and beef broth. Pour some of the soup into the crock pot to coat the bottom. Add roast, and top with onions. Pour remaining soup over and around roast. Cook on low 8-12 hours. When roast breaks up with a fork, remove it to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm. Remove liquid to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Comine cornstarch and water and mix well. Slowly add starch to boiling gravy and whisk constantly until it is the desired thickness. Shred roast into chunks for serving and pass gravy alongside. Serves 6.

Suggested side dishes: mashed potatoes, carrots, corn, green beans, cranberry salad

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