Pot Roast. Two magical words right there. POT freaking ROAST.
Pot roast was one of my absolute favorites as a kid. My aunt would make it for me when I would come for my annual summer visits and I didn’t even care if it was hot outside and the oven warmed up the house. She would roast everything in an oven bag and thicken up the juices afterward into this magical roasty gravy. *nostalgic sigh*
Well, oven bags kind of freak me out now. I mean, you’re putting plastic in the oven. All signs point to no. However, my only experience with making pot roast is using an oven bag, so I began my quest to make a non-oven bag pot roast. And here I am, so tell the tale.
1 4-5 pound Chuck Roast
4 whole yellow onions
6-8 whole carrots
Salt and Pepper
1-2 cups beef broth
Ideally, you’d make this in a Dutch oven or some other pot that’s oven and stove top safe. I’m not lucky enough to have one of those yet, so I just used a big pan to start things on the stove and then transferred everything to a roasting pan. So if you’re like me, get that big pan out.
Preheat your oven to 275 degrees F. Cut your onions in half and remove the exterior skins. Cut your carrots into 2-inch sections and leave those skins on (there’s extra goodness in the skins). Get some oil going in that pan and once it’s hot, put those onions in there cut side down. Brown one side, then the other. Once all your onions are done, move them to your roasting pan and throw those carrots in there for their turn. Those carrots will only need a minute or two in there. Get the carrots to your roasting pan.
Add more oil to the pan if you need to and get it hot. Yep, you’ve guessed it… time to sear that meat. Generously salt and pepper that bad boy and then sear all the sides in the hot pan. Move the meat to your roasting pan and then deglaze it with some broth. Pour that delicious deglazing broth into the roasting pan. Add enough broth to bring the liquid level up to about half way up the roast. Add the rosemary and thyme. Cover your roasting pan with a lid or foil.
Pop your covered roasting pan in the oven for 3-4 hours. If you like, when it’s almost done, remove the covering and let the top brown a wee bit. I can’t help myself, I love crunchy beefy bits.
Drain off the liquid back into a pot if you like and thicken it with some corn starch slurry to make a gravy. If you’re super pro, you would have timed making mashed potatoes just right to serve up with your meal.
If you’re super extra pro, you’ll find a pup begging from the couch across the room for a teensy widdle morsel…