Company Pot Roast
- prep time20 min
- total time 200 min
- serves 8
2008, Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics, All Rights Reserved.
1 (4 to 5-lb) prime boneless beef chuck roast, tied
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Good olive oil
2 cups carrots, chopped (4 carrots)
2 cups yellow onions, chopped (2 onions)
2 cups celery, chopped (4 stalks)
2 cups leeks, chopped (white and light green parts - 2 to 4 leeks)
5 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
2 cups good red wine, such as Burgundy
2 Tbsp Cognac or brandy
1 (28-oz) can whole plum tomatoes in purée
1 cup homemade chicken stock, preferably homemade
1 cube chicken bouillon
3 branches fresh thyme
2 branches rosemary
1 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1. Preheat the oven to 325ºF.
2. Pat the beef dry with a paper towel. Season the roast all over with 1 tablespoon salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper. Dredge the whole roast in flour, including the ends. In a large Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the roast and sear for 4 to 5 minutes, until nicely browned. Turn and sear the other side and then turn and sear the ends. This should take 4 to 5 minutes for each side. Remove the roast to a large plate.
3. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to the Dutch oven. Add the carrots, onions, celery, leeks, garlic, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper and cook over medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender but not browned. Add the wine and Cognac and bring to a boil. Add the tomatoes, chicken stock, bouillon cube, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Tie the thyme and rosemary together with kitchen string and add to the pot. Put the roast back into the pot, bring to a boil, and cover. Place in the oven for 2 1/2 hours, until the meat is fork tender or about 160ºF internally. Turn the heat down to 250ºF after about an hour to keep the sauce at a simmer.
4. Remove the roast to a cutting board. Remove the herb bundle and discard. Skim off as much fat as possible from the sauce. Transfer half the sauce and vegetables to a blender or a food processor fitted with the steel blade and purée until smooth. Pour the puree back into the pot, place on the stovetop over low heat, and return the sauce to a simmer. Place 2 tablespoons flour and the butter in a small bowl and mash them together with a fork. Stir into the sauce and simmer for 2 minutes, stirring until thickened. Taste for seasonings. Remove the strings from the roast, and slice the meat. Serve warm with the sauce spooned over it.