EATS: Hurricane Pot Roast

3

November 2, 2012 by annmquintero

Amazons, we’ve had a tough week in NYC, but rest assured that Randi, Dar, and I are doing just fine. I flew back to NYC from a gig in Annapolis just as everything was shutting down. I dropped my bags in my apartment and ran to the store to see what was left. No one knew how bad things would get or for how long and I had to do my regular post-trip kitchen re-stock as well, so I was looking for things that I could cook without electricity (I’m lucky to have a gas stove) and would sustain me and any hungry neighbors for a while.

I grabbed onions and potatoes, there were a few packages of celery and baby carrots left. When I got to the nearly empty meat case, I snagged the last chicken, a chuck roast, and a couple of pork tenderloins. True to Upper West Side form, there wasn’t a drop of organic milk to be found, so regular whole milk it was. The bread aisle had been ravaged, but that’s ok, because I’m trying to avoid bread anyway. In the checkout, I did spy a woman with cake frosting and a hairbrush. Hope she had a fun hurricane! I also swung by the liquor store to grab some cheap red wine; the chuck roast had given me ideas.

When dealing with cheaper, tougher cuts of meat like chuck, brisket, round, and shank, low and slow is the best approach. Normally I like to cook something like a pot roast in my CrockPot, but it’s absolutely possible to do it in the oven, keeping in line with the possibility of no electricity. I was lucky enough to maintain power throughout the storm, so that’s how I’ll describe the process here.

A word about CrockPots or slow cookers: They are cheap and easy and the perfect tool for when you want to come home to a delicious, hot meal after a day of work. I understand the instinct to be afraid of leaving an appliance plugged in all day in your absence, but I assure you, as long as you leave it on a hard, flat surface, leaving the crock pot working is little more dangerous than leaving a fan going.

What you’ll need:

Chuck roast
Onions
Carrots
Celery
Garlic
Herbs (I used a dried Italian blend and a couple of bay leaves)
Tomato paste
Red wine
Oil
Salt and pepper

CrockPot
Large skillet
Tongs

Mirepoix!

Let’s talk mirepoix. Mirepoix is a classic French culinary base for most soups, stews, sauces, etc. It’s very fancy. So fancy that it’s a pile of chopped up onions, carrots, and celery. It’ll make your life easier if you just do all the chopping in advance and set the veggies to the side.

Mmmm… caramelization.

Put your large skillet on high heat and get it really hot.  Season both sides of your chuck roast with salt and pepper. Put just a drizzle of oil in the hot pan, then use your tongs to place the roast in the pan. Leave it there for at least 2 minutes. Don’t move it around. Don’t check it. Don’t fuss with it. What you’re doing now is searing the meat. Contrary to common folklore, searing does not “seal in juices.” It does, however, put a nice caramelization on the meat, bringing out flavor and lessening its potential to look unappetizingly grey after low, slow cooking. After at least 2 minutes on either side in the pan, move it to your slow cooker.

Add your already chopped mirepoix to the hot pan. I also added some garlic, smashed with the flat of my knife, to the mix. Take the heat down to medium and let the veggies soften a bit, picking up any burnt goodies left by the searing meat. Hit the veggies with a bit of salt and pepper. Toss in any herbs you have around. Dried herbs are well-suited to a slow cooking situation. Fresh is always wonderful, but this is a great time to use what you have in your pantry already. (I also found capers in my fridge, so I threw those in too!)

Once the veggies are soft, hit the pan with some red wine to deglaze it. All the tasty brown bits that are stuck to the pan will dissolve into the liquid, allowing you to keep all their flavor. I probably added a cup and a half of wine to my pan and allowed it to simmer for 10 minutes. I also added the tomato paste at this point.

After letting my meaty, herby, winey concoction mingle for a while, I dumped it unceremoniously over the top of my seared chuck roast, threw in a few extra baby carrots, some larger chunks of celery, popped the lid on and set it on low for 6 hours.

From that point on, I was a free agent. It was all bouncy cats, all the time!

We don’t need no stinkin’ knives!

With something this stew-like and saucy, you’re going to want something to soak it up. For some of you that might be a nice crusty loaf of bread or some bowtie pasta, but for a lot of my audience, I know that won’t quite do. For my gluten-frees, try mashed potatoes, rice, quinoa, or polenta. For my paleos I would go for smashed sweet potatoes with some salt and paprika, maybe a little garlic. Mashed, steamed cauliflower makes a nice faux potato as well. You could also just serve it over steamed broccoli. It may not get the same level of brilliant soppiness, but it’ll get you there all the same. And it’ll up your cruciferous intake to boot!

If you want or need to do this in the oven instead of in a crock pot, I recommend a dutch oven or a casserole dish with a good lid, on top of an aluminum foil-lined sheet pan in the oven at 250F for 6 hours. Everything else remains the same. You’ll end up with the same product, but the electric slow cookers use a lot less energy.

Be safe out there!

(If this is your first time reading EATS, I encourage you to check out the Introductions post for my philosophy and list of must-have kitchen items.)

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “EATS: Hurricane Pot Roast

  1. […] hit NYC; which is where the whole Urban Amazon team lives.  Fortunately we’re all safe and Ann made pot roast (yes, Ann’s pot roast is a fortuitous event).  As New York comes out of the dark times […]

  2. […] Plop it in the rack over your roughly chopped or broken carrots, celery, and onions (also known as mirepoix). Add a little bit of water to the pan to keep the veggies from burning too badly, and pop it all […]

  3. […] a drizzle of olive oil and add your carrots, onions, and celery on medium heat (You remember our mirepoix, right?). Add the bell pepper, garlic, crushed red pepper, thyme and salt and pepper as the veggies […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Instagram

It's important to look back. So you can see your progress. So you understand your process. So you can check in on what you've learned. . . A year ago I was preparing to go to Thailand to study with @luna_alignment_yoga and @talswissa - I had no idea what I was in for. All I knew was I was called to go. At the time I felt so broken and exhausted. I couldn't have guessed the great adventure that was waiting for me... yes, the trip, but also the deep exploration of myself! . . This is one of my favorite selfies, taken the last morning there. My cat had died overnight (4 days before I could make it home), I'd been crying for days, I'd barely slept, but I also felt stronger than I ever have before! Every time I see this picture I'm reminded of my own beauty and resiliency. Even though my heart hurt. Even though I was so tired, I KNEW it was all going to be ok. . . What in your life reminds you that you are strong and beautiful? Share in the comments! . . #strongandbeautiful #bighair #curlyhair #kohphagan #thailand #islandlove #islandlife #selflove #selfcare #internalstrength
In fad diets and infomercials about "personal improvement" I see claims all the time about "the secret" to weight loss, success, and happiness. . . Want to know the REAL "secrets"? There are 2, and I'll give them to you for free: . 1) believe change is possible. If you've been telling yourself the same old story all along (that you aren't good enough, that diets don't work, that you're unattractive, whatever!) Guess what? You're right! Because you're building your reality. But if you change what you believe - and I mean REALLY change it, not just platitudes and bullshit, then your actions will change with you. . . 2) Consistency is what counts. When clients and students try to tell me that something doesn't work, 9 times out of 10 it's because they were inconsistent. That inconsistency comes from misalignment beliefs that we then work on together. (The other time is typically a deeper problem one or both of us didn't realize exhibited yet.) . . . Moral of the story: examine your beliefs and change your mindset to change your life! I believe in you. . Questions? Post them in the comments. . With me? Post 🙌 in the comments. . #lifegoals #selfdevelopment #selfcare #growth #belief #foundationalbeliefs #ibelieveinyou #wisdomwednesday #ww #wisdomwednes #wisdom
Whether you woke up feeling like a rock star, or you feel like this morning was forged in hell, I'm here to tell you: you've got this! . . . I've spent the last year partly absent from Insta because I felt like I had nothing worth posting. I was struggling- with fatigue, with burn out, with my self image. Some of it I'm still working on; but one of the most important things of learned is that we each make our own reality. The stories I tell myself about myself build my actions and therefore my future. . . . If you woke up struggling today, it's time to rewrite the script! You're beautiful. You've got this. Take 5 deep breaths, release the bullshit, and start building some wins for yourself. . . I believe in you. . #mondaymotivation #naturalbeauty #mm #loveyourmug #realtalk
The view from GW this afternoon. #letitsnow . . #equinox #teameqx #greenwichaveeqx
Just a reminder. . . #clearmindopenheart
When the Universe gives you what you needed, say "Thank You!" . . 2018 was a really challenging year. Personally. Professionally. Spiritually. One of the most important things I learned along the way was to stop questioning when I get what I need. Instead I express gratitude! . . Time and again I'd be presented with exactly the growth opportunity or essential thing I NEEDED to survive...and I'd question it! I'd doubt if it was the right choice or if I could pull it off 🤦‍♀️ - until it became so obvious that my doubts were foolish. I was right where I needed to be. . . For #transfomationtuesday share in the comments some gratitude for times you were given exactly what you needed! 💓💓 . . #dropthedoubt #motivation #anothergrowthopportunity #growandchange #gratitude #universalguidance #modernspirituality #thankyou #saythankyou
%d bloggers like this: