Friday, February 18, 2011

Crock Pot Cooking: Pot Roast

Okay, here's how I do pot roast.

Slow Cooker Pot Roast
1 Roast (I prefer chuck roast, but you can use whatever you like)
Stock (or water and beef base)
Veggies of your choice (or none at all)

This is so simple it ought to be illegal, but I'm sure glad it's not.
Put your roast in the crock pot and add your stock, or the water and beef base. Here again I used chicken stock and a tablespoon of beef base - I still haven't gotten around to making more beef stock.
I don't even thaw the roast out, I just plop it in frozen, first thing in the morning, and then cook it on low all day.
You can add veggies if you want, but I don't like to. To me it's just like beef stew with one really big hunk of meat in it if you add veggies. This is something I like to cook if I don't have any time in the morning, but will have a little time in the evening to finish up supper (or when one of my older daughters will be there and can cook the rest). Most often we serve it with mashed potatoes, or with cubed red, or fingerling potatoes that I roast in the oven with onions, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
Just like with the stew, you will thicken it with a rue made from a combination of olive oil, butter and flour. I even used the same pictures I took for the beef stew because it's the same process. If you need to thicken it quickly you can use cornstarch and water. Just add cold water, a little at a time to the cornstarch while stirring, until you have it fairly runny and then pour it in. Remember to stir the pot while you add it or you'll get little lumps. If it's still not thick enough, mix some more and add it in. Do this until you have the consistancy you want. After you do it a time or two you will get the feel for how much cornstarch you will need to start with in the future, for the amount of food you're making. I think the rue makes a slightly better tasting gravy, but the cornstarch does a good job too.
I try to slice it for serving, but because it's so tender, I often end up with something that looks like shredded beef. This piece looks pretty good, but it was one of the first I cut. By the time I got around to serving my plate we had the shredded beef. :D
Mmmmmmm. It was very good. Kay makes the best mashed potatoes. She doesn't mash them completely smooth (you can see the lump of a potato in the front, left of the pile) so you occasionally get a big chunk of potato - I like that.
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