Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Old Fashioned Pot Roast

When I was  young,  I walked into my parents house after school and the aroma drifted to my nose and I was immediately hungry and salivating.  I guess this was my comfort food, as it always made my day better.  It can be a very simple meal or very elaborate.  It's always a very versatile dish, and could be changed into other things if there were any leftovers.
I like chuck roast as it is easy to work with and has so much flavor. Of course the flavor comes from the fat, which is why you don't ever cut it off.  If meat is free of fat, it becomes dry and bland when cooked.  Did I tell you that price plays a big part in the selection of chuck roast?  Generally it is a low price and many times this cut of meat is used make delicious ground beef.  
Put the chuck roast in a big dutch oven, cover it with water, add a small handful of salt (maybe 2-3 tablespoons, which can be adjusted later), 1 large onion cut in to eighths, 6-8 garlic cloves.  Cover and simmer for several hours ( this was about 2 1/2-3 pounds, so it simmered about 3 hours).  The last hour, add some small peeled potatoes, carrots and celery.  If I would have had some very small onions, I would have added at least 6. Check the broth for salt, cover and simmer.  When the vegetables stick fork tender, it's ready to serve.
Serve with a salad and butter bread.
I love a dish that is versatile.  Add whatever I want and it always turns out good. Gravy is good on the pot roast.  I put a cup or two of coffee in mine.  When I did that one time, our son was over to dinner and he asked what the secret ingredient was that he was tasting.  "It's not bad Mama, but I can't tell what it is," he said.  I leaned over and whispered, "it's coffee!"  Well, you should have seen his face, a look of total surprise.  Then he leaned toward me and asked, "Does Dad know?"  To say my husband hates coffee, would not be true.  He absolutely detests it.  He says, "Good and coffee don't belong in the same statement."  I love coffee and so do our children.

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