Crock Pot that Pot Roast!

Last week I wanted to make pot roast for dinner, and although I’ve made it before and posted that recipe (which you can find here), I wanted to try another one just to mix things up.  I actually combined 2 recipes and sorta used them as guidelines. Since we have a gas stove, I didn’t want to cook it over the stove-top all day (wouldn’t that be a nice gas bill next month!?).  Instead, a crock-pot was the answer.  And the great thing about crock-pots, obviously, is once I got everything together and into the pot, it just cooked all day long.  And when I got home, dinner was ready 🙂  So here goes…

2-4 lbs chuck roast (I think mine was roughly 2 lbs, and it fed 4 people)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (maybe about 1/4 cup)
Salt and pepper
32 oz. beef broth (or stock)
(1) 6-ounce can tomato paste
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons paprika
3 teaspoons allspice (I didn’t have allspice, so I substituted cinnamon)
1 large yellow onion, cut into quarters (or smaller)
baby carrots, as desired
red potatoes, as desired (cut into quarters)
1 clove garlic (or more if desired)

First, salt and pepper your roast and don’t skimp!  I used sea salt, but I’m sure regular salt is just fine.  Pour some EVOO into your pan over high heat on the stove.  You want to sear the edges of your roast. This helps seal in some of the yummy flavor.  So once your oil heats up (just a few minutes), carefully place your roast in the pan.  Be careful not to drop it in!  That hot oil could splash out, and it is HOT!  Sear all the edges for approx 5 mins, just until golden brown.

Once it seared, I set it aside and made my marinade for the crock pot. First, I poured the beef stock, balsamic vinegar, honey and tomato paste into the crock pot and stirred it together.  Then, I added the paprika, cinnamon, garlic and some salt and pepper to taste.  **I substituted cinnamon for allspice, and I did it with a 1:1 proportion.  If you use cinnamon, I would use a little bit less.  The mixture smelled strongly of cinnamon every time I lifted the lid of the crock-pot, but luckily it didn’t absorb into the meat and veggies as much as I feared it had.  But still, next time I’ll do a little less.**

Here’s my marinade ready for the roast!

All that’s left is tossing in the meat and veggies.  My roast wasn’t huge, but if you have a smaller crock-pot or larger roast, you want to load in half your veggies, then your roast, then the other half of the veggies.  The roast needs to be at least 3/4 submerged into the marinade.  If it’s not, just add more beef broth (or water).  Then cook either on high for a few hours (maybe 3-4) or low for several hours (7-8).  I did a mix.  I cooked it on high for almost 3 hours, then turned it to low for another 3.  Just do what feels right 😉

Then invite your friends over and enjoy your dinner 🙂  We asked our sweet neighbors Tyler and Anna (and their precious baby Griffin) to join us.  We sure do love having these guys right next door!

OH! and another advantage to this meal is it’s full of compost materials!  All of this went into the compost bin 🙂