I get calls all the time asking, “Can I put Health Craft cookware in the oven to cook a Pot Roast”? Then I ask WHY are you cooking a POT ROAST in the oven? The operative word being POT and defeating the purpose of this longstanding culinary method. Almost always people say they are taking a cooking class and the recipe calls for the “Pot Roast” to be cooked in the oven. Then it would become an Oven Roast wouldn’t it? Traditionally speaking a “Pot Roast” is to be cooked in a pot on top of the stove.
Pot Roasting is a beef dish made by slow cooking a usually tough cut of beef in moist heat, sometimes with vegetables. Tougher cuts such as chuck steak, bottom round, short ribs, and 7-bone roast are preferred for the technique of cooking a roast on top of the stove. While the toughness of the fibers makes them unsuitable for oven roasting, slow cooking on top of the stove tenderizes the meat providing exceptional flavor.
Browning the roast before adding liquid is an optional step to improve the flavor. Browning can occur at lower temperatures with a longer cooking time, but the result is less intense than a high temperature sear. Either technique can be used when making pot roast. The result is tender, succulent meat and a rich liquid that lends itself to gravy.
In North America, where it is also known as "Yankee pot roast", the dish is often served with vegetables such as carrots, potatoes and onions simmered in the cooking liquid. Pot roast is an American variation of the French dish boeuf à la mode that has been modified by influences from German Americans and American Jews.
EQUIPMENT: 6-quart Dutch oven with High-Dome cover, Rotary Food Cutter.
PREPARATION: 1 hour 30 minutes – serve 6 to 10
- 3 to 4-pound chuck, shoulder or tenderloin tip or rib roast.
- 1 cup red wine
- 2 onions, chopped #2 cutting cone
- 2 carrots, shredded #1 cutting cone
- 2 stalks celery, shredded #1 cutting cone
- 1 cup Veal or Beef Stock
- 2 to 3 tablespoons Roux (page 190 Healthy Meat & Potatoes)
If you brown (sear) the meat and then roast on top of the stove your roast will cook in a relatively short period of time.
Preheat the Dutch oven bottom over medium to medium-high heat. Sprinkle a few drops of water into the pan. If the water droplet “dance” then the pan is hot enough to quickly brown the meat. If they just evaporate, then the pan is not hot enough.
In a hot, dry Dutch oven over medium to medium-high heat 300ᵒF to 375ᵒF, brown the roast on all sides, 8 to 10 minutes per side, turning the roast as it releases easily from the pan. To create an excellent gravy be careful not to burn or char the roast or pan juices.
To create a delicious pan sauce slowly stir in the wine and reduce by half. Add the grated vegetables. Reduce the heat to medium-low 225ᵒF and cover the pan with the hi-dome cover. When the cover spins freely on a cushion of moisture and tiny bubbles appear around the rim, a vapor seal has formed, 5 to 7 minutes.
THE PERFECT ROASTING TEMPERATURE: If the vapor seal spits moisture, the temperature is too high. If no bubbles appear, the heat is too low. Adjust the temperature so tiny bubbles appears around the rim. Braise the roast for 15 to 20 minutes per pound.
When the roast is done, remove to a warm platter and keep warm.
To prepare the gravy, turn the heat to medium 225ᵒF to 250ᵒF and add the veal or beef stock and half the Roux to the pan. Cook, stirring until the gravy thickens. Add more Roux for desired thickness.
Return the roast to the pan and combine with gravy.
Serve with cooked mashed potatoes and vegetables.