Sunday, March 30, 2008

Pot Roast & Risotto

If you have been reading my blog since day one (which was only a few weeks ago), you might recall that I was pining for pot roast. I took out what I thought was a pot roast from my freezer but it turned out to be about 4 pounds of ground beef. Well, I finally made the pot roast that I have been dying for. I am one of those cooks who tries new recipes constantly. I rarely make the same recipe twice. But in this case, I loved Tyler Florence's pot roast and risotto recipe so much that I am on my third or fourth time making it. That really says something for this recipe. Tyler Florence makes this pot roast on the stove top in a large dutch oven. I am not sure why we couldn't use a slow cooker but I didn't. I followed his recipe to the letter. It was so good that I didn't want to mess with success. The recipe is time-consuming at over 3 hours just to cook the pot roast (which is why I thought it could be put into a slow cooker) but it is so worth the time. Just try it once and you'll be hooked on this pot roast too! The risotto is creamy and heavenly -- so luscious. All I can say is yum!

Pot Roast Risotto
3 hrs., 55 mins.


Pot Roast:

2 1/2 pound beef shoulder
3 garlic cloves, smashed
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
4 sprigs fresh thyme
2 medium onions, peeled and sliced in half
4 large carrots, cut in half
2 celery stalks, sliced in large pieces
1 cup red wine
2 quarts beef stock
2 sprigs of rosemary
2 bay leaves
Extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


1 medium onion, finely chopped
4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves picked
2 cups Arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
8 cups pot-roast braising stock, strained, skimmed and heated
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil

Cooking Instructions:

Start with the pot roast. Drizzle the meat with extra-virgin olive oil and then season all over with a good amount of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. In a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot that has a tight cover, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil and 1 tablespoon of butter over moderately high heat. Sear the beef all over, ensuring a nice crust and good even color. Add the rosemary, thyme, bay leaves and garlic cloves to the beef. Then add the onions, carrots and celery and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the red wine and then the stock.

Cover the pot and reduce the heat to low. Braise for about 3 hours, basting every 30 minutes with the pan juices, until the beef is fork tender. Set the meat aside and take out the vegetables. Strain the braising liquid and skim the fat, this will be used to make the risotto.

Now prepare the risotto. Place a large, deep skillet over medium heat and pour in 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Add onions and cook for 5 minutes, until soft. Stir in the rice making sure to coat all the grains with the oil. Add wine and thyme and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Ladle in 1 cup of strained, hot braising stock. Using a wooden spoon, stir constantly until most of the stock has been absorbed. Keep adding stock, one cup at a time, and stirring until absorbed. After about 10 to 15 minutes, test the rice. It should be cooked and creamy but still have a slight bite to it. (You may not need all of the stock.) Season with salt and pepper; stir in Parmesan cheese. Taste for seasoning then remove from heat and cover. Just before serving fold in chopped parsley.

To serve, slice the pot roast and arrange over the top of the risotto with some of the vegetables. Garnish with fresh parsley stems.

I didn't use all the beef stock to make the risotto but I didn't have much left. I like my risotto more creamy than crunchy. I didn't keep the onions and celery that were cooked with the roast. I did keep the carrots to enjoy with dinner. The pot roast and risotto wasn't very photogenic so if you really need to see a better picture you can check out and search for pot roast and risotto.