Sunday, October 30, 2011

Fall Put A Spell On Me

"Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns."
- George Eliot

The fall season is finally upon us in Nashville, and it is bewitching. The bright leaves of red and orange, the bountiful pumpkin displays, the smell of apple cider lingering in the crisp autumn air, candy corn, and the excitement around Halloween costumes and Thanksgiving pies make me euphoric.  Even the opportunity to wear scarves and boots again tickles my fashionable fancy. This is my happy place.

This past weekend was the first in three weeks that I have been home. And I've never been more content to answer "absolutely nothing" when asked if I had any plans for the last two days. But I did know of one familiar place where I wanted to spend some time this weekend: my kitchen. I've had it in my head to make a pot roast for about a week. And Saturday presented the perfect opportunity to do so. Because this recipe called for a good 5 hours of my time, I needed a lazy weekend to enjoy the process from shopping for the ingredients to serving it on the plate. 

From our apartment, you can see a snippet of the downtown skyline. So I opened the door to our balcony, letting the brisk air fill the room, and began to prepare a traditional Yankee pot roast. About an hour into cooking, Nina Simone's "I Put a Spell on You" started to play on Pandora. And I thought
 this song was the perfect compliment to my dish.

A hearty meal that could leave you with a week's worth of leftovers is a great choice for the fall. The flavor is good. The level of difficulty in making this dish is easy. And the pot roast comes out wonderfully tender. You could serve it over brown rice, or we chose to simply eat it as is - soaking up any leftover broth with a crusty fresh loaf of bread.

Bon Appétit!

Traditional Yankee Pot Roast


2 teaspoons olive oil
1 (4-pound) boneless chuck roast, trimmed
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon cracked black pepper
2 cups coarsely chopped onion
2 cups low-salt beef broth
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 cup chopped plum tomato
1 1/4 pounds small red potatoes
1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Chopped fresh parsley (optional)


* Preheat oven to 300°.
* Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sprinkle roast with salt and pepper. Add roast to pan, browning on all sides (about 8 minutes). Remove from pan. Add onion to pan; sauté 8 minutes or until browned. Return roast to pan. Combine broth, ketchup, and Worcestershire; pour over roast. Add tomato; bring to a simmer.
* Cover and bake at 300° for 2 1/2 hours or until tender. Add potatoes and carrots; cover and bake an additional 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in lemon juice. Garnish with parsley, if desired.

1 comment:

Beka Roberts Johnson said...

Great minds think alike... I just made a pot roast last weekend! Fall really calls for it. Yours looks delish!!