Back on the block, in our family, like almost everywhere else in America, Sunday was pot roast day. And my mother would make it the usual way via baking or roasting in the oven. Lately, thinking back on those days, I started experimenting with pot roast. And one of the most successful method was braising instead of roasting. I subsequently discovered that braising made the pot roast juicier, more moist and less dry than the baking method. It has become our favorite way of preparing a roast.
In the recipe given I use a chuck roast like my mother did back in Spanish Harlem. You do not need a fancy cut of meat in this. Braising renders the meat succulent, whether it’s chuck roast or top loin roast. So, if you’re money conscious, use the good ole’ chuck meat. If you wanna splurge on a choice cut, that’s up to you.
Also note that this braising recipe can also be used for lamb, pork or fowl. It’s an all-purpose recipe, and that’s it’s advantage. You can use it with whatever meat you like. Though I do not thank it would work that well for fish. But, if you want to try it with fish and prove me wrong, go right ahead. That’s the beauty of experimenting with cooking: you can really come up with some great results (or not). And if not, keep at it. It will always serve you well.
BRAISING POT ROAST
1 beef chuck roast, about 3 pounds
Salt to taste
Fresh ground pepper to taste
Oregano, fresh or dried to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil
2-3 cups diced cabbage or celery
2-3 carrots, cut into rounds
½ cup dry red wine
1 cup chicken broth
½ cup tomato sauce
Bunch fresh rosemary or tarragon
- Rinse meat under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels.
- Prick the meat all over with a fork or knife. Season on all sides with the salt, pepper, and oregano, rubbing the seasoning into the meat with the flat of the hand. Drizzle with the olive oil
- Place the roast in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add and scatter all over with the cabbage and carrots. Add wine and chicken broth mixed with the tomato sauce. Top with a bunch of fresh rosemary or tarragon. Bring to boil, cover, lower heat to low-medium and simmer for an hour or so or until meat is tender. Transfer to a serving platter and serve.
Yield: 4-6 servings.