Monday, January 10, 2011

226. New England Pot Roast with Horseradish, Family Dinner

Pot roast is a well-loved dish which, in past generations, was often served for Sunday dinner after the family returned from church. If friends or relatives stopped over, the meal would be stretched with the addition of more vegetables. 

My mother's pot roast recipe called for seasoned beef to be browned first and then simmered in water or broth until tender. When the meat was almost-tender, vegetables were added and the mixture was simmered until beef and vegetables were very tender. At this point, the beef and vegetables were removed and set aside and the broth thickenend into a smooth, rich gravy. All of this 'deliciousness' made a great meal to be thankful for and enjoyed.

Years ago, I discovered two heavenly, pot roast recipes with very different flavors than my mother's traditional pot roast. One recipe has a tomato/basil flavoring so wonderful-tasting, it is hard to describe. The other one is also fabulous - the New England Pot Roast with Horseradish; this superb recipe makes a hearty meal  my whole family loves.

*(The recipe calls for a chuck roast with bone-in; this cut of meat is almost impossible to find as bone-in beef has all but disappeared in most meat markets. The pot roast can be made without the bone, but if you can find a soup bone to add to the pot, it will add a special, rich flavoring ).

New England Pot Roast with Horseradish

¼ C flour
Salt and pepper, to taste
8 small  red potatoes,halved (skins on -optional)
8 med. carrots, pared and halved crosswise and lengthwise
4 small onions cut into wedges
4-pound beef chuck pot roast (with bone)*
2 T shortening or oil
1 jar, 5oz horseradish
1 C water

Mix flour and salt and the pepper; rub mixture on meat. Heat oil in large skillet or Dutch oven; brown meat on both sides over med. heat, about 15 min. Do not burn flour coating.

Reduce heat; spread horseradish on both sides of meat and place back in pot. Add water; cover and simmer on burner or place in a 325 degree oven for 3-4 hours until meat is tender. About 1 hour before end of cooking time, add vegetables and salt to taste. Place meat and vegetables on warm platter; keep warm while making gravy. Serve pot roast meal with gravy.

Pour drippings, fat and juices, into a bowl, leaving brown particles in pan. Let any fat rise to the top of the drippings; skim off fat, reserving ¼ C. Place reserved fat in pan. Blend in ¼ C flour. Cook over low heat stirring until mixture is smooth and bubbly and blending in the browned particles. Remove pot from heat. Measure meat juice; add water to measure 2 Cups liquid. Stir into flour mixture slowly and stirring constantly to avoid lumps. Boil and stir 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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