Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Porcini Mushroom Pot Roast

This is my all-time favorite pot roast. The thing that makes this pot roast so special is the gravy. You will want to put it on everything (which I actually did after I took the photo...potatoes, green beans, and all). And it is so easy to make. After cooking the roast for hours until it falls apart, the remaining sauce of onions, porcini mushrooms, herbs, and wine is pureed, creating a rich, decadent gravy. If you are having guests over, then make this and I promise they will be impressed. We made this for my mom while she was visiting and even she said this was the best pot roast she has ever had.

Porcini Mushroom Pot Roast
Servings: 6

1 (4 lb) boneless beef chuck roast, trimmed 
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil, divided
2 yellow onions, chopped
6 garlic cloves, chopped
1 cup dry red wine, such as Pinot Noir or Cabernet Sauvignon
1 - 15 oz. can low-sodium beef broth
3/4 oz. dried porcini mushrooms
1 sprig fresh rosemary
6 sprigs fresh thyme

Preheat the oven to 325°. Dry the beef with paper towels and liberally season both sides with salt and pepper. Preheat 2 tbsp. oil in a large dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the beef and cook on all sides until nicely browned. Remove the beef and set aside.

Reduce the heat to medium and add another 2 tbsp. oil to the dutch oven. Add the onion and sauté until softened. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Add the wine and scrape up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Stir in the beef broth and porcini mushrooms. Tie the rosemary and thyme sprigs together with kitchen twine, and add to the pot. Return the beef to the pot and bring to a boil. 

Cover and place on the center rack in the oven. Cook for about 4 hours, turning the beef over half way through cooking, or until the beef is fork tender and begins to fall apart. (Note: If the meat feels tough, then it is undercooked and not overcooked. Keep cooking until the meat is very tender. Do not worry about over-cooking.) Remove the roast from the dutch oven and tent with foil while preparing the gravy. 

Remove the herb bouquet and skim the excess fat off the top of the sauce. Using an immersion blender (or transfer to a regular blender), blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Slice the roast across the grain. Return the beef to the pot to serve, or transfer the beef to a platter and pour half of the gravy over the top. Serve the remaining gravy on the side.

Source: slightly adapted from Giada De Laurentiis via Food Network

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