I have to admit- I've been feeling a bit like I've cheated you. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to. I was young and naive in the world of Pretty in Pork. You may recall, if you've been here since the beginning, that my very first post was regarding pot roast. It was a delicious pot roast, but I'll be honest, it was a bit of a cop out being that I used a jar of basting liquid instead of making it from scratch. So alas, I've decided to redeem myself, and redeem myself did I ever! I will go ahead and toot my own horn and tell you that I made the most delicious pot roast for a lovely Sunday supper at the farmhouse this past weekend. It was the perfect slow cooked meal on an even more perfect fall Sunday.
Now, please don't judge this dish by the ingredients. It calls for golden raisins and pine nuts- I know, weird right? Or so I thought. I don't typically eat raisins. It's not that I don't like them, its just that it makes me feel like I'm 4 years old and in Kindergarten again (which I guess, once in a while, isn't a bad thing). And pine nuts- well I've only heard of them in pesto sauce, which I don't particularly love. So, needless to say, I was a little hesitant. But, like me, don't let the raisins and pine nuts fool you. It seems strange to say, but the raisins give the slightest bit of sweetness to the cooking liquid and ultimately to the meat and I promise you, it's so good! And the pine nuts cook till they are a bit soft so the texture is actually a nice un-crunchy compliment to the rest of the dish. All in all, the dish was absolutely to die for. This pot roast is definitely going down in my "It's Sunday and I feel like a yummy, hearty, slow-cooked, cozy comfort food" book.
Italian Style Pot Roast
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 3lb chuck roast
freshly ground black pepper
1 yellow onion, finely minced
1 carrot, peeled and finely minced
1 stalk celery, finely minced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 28 oz can plum tomatoes, drained and chopped, liquid reserved
2 cups red wine
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup pine nuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter with olive oil in a dutch oven over high heat. Season the roast with salt and pepper and add to the pot. Cook 3 to 4 minutes per side, until browned. Transfer meat to a plate. Discard all but 2 tbsp of the oil from the pot. Add onion, carrot, celery and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until softened. Stir in garlic. Add tomatoes and reserved juices and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the wine and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Add meat, raisins, and pine nuts to pot, cover and bake for 2 hours until meat is tender, turning pot every 30 minutes or so to ensure even cooking.
Remove meat from oven and skim away and discard any of the fat that has risen to the top. Cook the liquid over high heat for 2 to 3 minutes, until thickened. Transfer meat to a cutting board and cut into thin slices. Arrange on a warm serving platter and spoon sauce over top.
Modern Housewife tips:
1. I added 1 8oz package of mushrooms. I let them cook about 2 to 3 minutes before adding the tomatoes.
2. This recipe calls for finely mincing the veggies but I love all of these veggies and think next time I'll try chopping them into larger bits so that I get more of the taste of the veggies with each bite.
3. I served the post roast along with garlic mashed potatoes which I threw together about 15 minutes before I took the roast out of the oven.
4. The chuck roast was good and I think is the classic meat for pot roasts but next time I might try a leaner cut of beef such as a top round roast. The chuck tended to be more fatty than I like.
Recipe Adapted from The Cakebread Cellars Napa Valley Cookbook