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Garlic-Balsamic Braised Pot Roast with Mashed Potatoes

 

Garlic Balsamic Braised Pot Roast
 

Ingredients

Garlic-Balsamic Braised Pot Roast with Mashed Potatoes

I choose this recipe to end this article because of what this kind of recipe means to me and my philosophy of cooking.  I love lifetime quality equipment.  My only piece of equipment used here is a Le Creuset French Oven.  I gave you a recipe that is a classic braise using the addition of the acidic vinegar and braising liquids.  Put this in the oven after the searing and preparation, then walk away.  Go have a walk together, go to the park and play, or go see a movie.  Come back to melt-in-your mouth beef, falling apart.  Your Valentine will love this, and so will you.  As a closing word of commentary for this Valentine’s creative idea spread from me, know this much…food and time makes memories, share your love by making food and time and giving that to your family, your partner, and your friends and family.

Products Used

LeCreuset Signature French Oven - 9 Quart Round

  • 3 pounds bottom round roast – the type of roast is less important for this kind of dish.  I bought what was on sale when I went into the grocery store
  • 1 quart vegetable cooking broth
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ½ to 1 quart of water – this amount is dependent on the thickness of your roast used.  You want broth to come within a few inches of the top of your roast in a classic braise.
  • 4 tablespoons concentrated beef au juice broth
  • ¼ c. olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter to pan sear meat and vegetables
  • 2 c. frozen chopped soup starting vegetable mix – a great time saver I love.

 

  • 1 medium onion roughly chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves – only the paper husks removed, not chopped or otherwise prepared
  • 1 tablespoon Hungarian paprika – this is a flavor I love, but any paprika you wish to use is fine
  • 3 tablespoons dry parsley flakes
  • 1 tablespoon minced onion flakes
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 ½ tablespoon roasted garlic powder – all I can say is I love garlic in all its forms, use less if you do not

Directions

Pan sear all sides of the roast to develop browning and flavor in a hot pan with butter/olive oil combination in the Le Creuset French oven.  Add the frozen soup starting vegetables and chopped onion to the French after the roast has been removed.  Brown these till soft and transparent, removing any browned flavor bits around the pan bottom and sides as you sauté the vegetables.  Return the oven to the French oven with the vegetables, add the spices, salt and pepper, and all the liquids.  Bake the roast at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for about 4 hours total.  Cooking times for beef roasts are approximately 1 to 1 ½ hours per pound of meat generally.  Go take your walk, or see your movie.  Return and check the roast.  It is finished when it is soft and falling apart when prodded with a fork.  Remove the roast and make a pan gravy in the style you wish.
 
 

Tips

  • Braising requires time, low heat, and moisture to break down the connective tissues in tough proteins.  Otherwise unpalatable foods can be turned into mouth-watering, tender delights using braising method.  Basic braising methods start with searing large cuts of proteins and vegetables till browned and caramelized to enhance flavor profiles.  I used my Le Creuset on a propane gas stove top using traditional dry heat searing. 
  • Cooking liquids like stocks are added in braising, often including an acidic element such as wine, beer, tomatoes, citrus, or vinegar. In the continued classic method, braising liquids will cover 2/3 of the protein and/or vegetable dish.  I used a combination of medium quality and price balsamic vinegar, vegetable broth, and the addition of concentrated beef au juice.
  • The soup starting vegetables are a total blessing to have in the freezer.  Open the bag and voila, no involved chopping needed to prepare the base of a good soup or braise.  Check your local grocery for the vegetable mixes available.  I like one for this braise that has onions, red and green bell peppers, and celery.  I add the extra fresh onion because I love onions.
  • The remaining liquids from the fully cooked dish is used to finish a sauce or gravy.  I made a standard finished gravy by adding a thickener of cornstarch thinned with a bit of water.  I like a rustic gravy, so I do not take the time to strain or puree the cooking liquids before I make the gravy.  Remember to cook the gravy at a nice boil for about 5 minutes to “cook out” the raw starch flavor.
  • This recipe could be easily adapted to a crock pot if needed.  I would suggest cooking around 8 hours on simmer after you have pan seared the roast and brought the roast and cooking liquids up to a boil.  I have not used a crock pot to the extent on meats to be really time accurate, which is perhaps a project for the future sometime.  Different models carry very different features and heat conductivity levels.
  • Make up some mashed potatoes to go with your roast and let your loved ones rave about how yummy the food was and how wonderful you are.  Happy Valentine’s Day my people, enjoy and share your love this holiday with the gift of food and time.  This is your creative idea for Valentines that no one else can ever duplicate.
    Written by: Alecia Kay
 
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