Family-Style Pot Roast
- 3 1/2 pounds beef chuck, trimmed of excess fat
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
- 2 teaspoons fresh cracked black pepper, plus more for seasoning
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil or olive oil
- 6 cups sliced onions, 1/4-inch thick
- 1/2 cup sliced shallots, 1/4-inch thick
- 1/4 cup peeled garlic cloves, smashed
- 1 1/2 cups sliced celery, 1-inch pieces
- 1 1/2 cups sliced carrots, 1-inch coins
- 1 1/2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 1/2 cups beef stock
- 2/3 cup red wine, zinfandel preferred
- 2 tablespoons dried savory
- 6 sprigs fresh thyme (see Cook's Note)
Special equipment: butcher's twine, immersion blender
Cook's Note: Tie the thyme sprigs with butcher's twine to help remove the sprigs easily when you're ready to serve.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Sprinkle the beef evenly with the salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Truss the roast with butcher's twine into a uniform shape. This will help the roast keep a uniform shape while it braises and make for more even slices.
Place the porcini mushrooms into a bowl and cover with 2 cups simmering water. Set aside and allow the mushrooms to steep and absorb the water for 20 minutes.
In a large Dutch oven over high heat, add the butter and oil. When the butter foams, add the trussed beef and sear for 5 to 6 minutes per side, including the ends. Remove to a plate. In the same pot over medium high-heat, add the onions and shallots and cook until just starting to caramelize, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic, celery and carrots and cook until the celery just begins to soften, about 5 minutes longer.
Stir in the tomato paste and combine. Deglaze with the beef stock and wine, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes to burn off the alcohol from the wine. Add the savory and thyme. Strain the porcini mushrooms and add to the pot along with 1 cup of the porcini liquid. Add the beef and any juices from the beef back to the pot on top of the vegetables. Cover the pan with a tight fitting lid and place in the oven. Cook for 45 minutes, baste with pan juices, replace the cover and cook for an additional 90 minutes.
Remove the beef and tent lightly with aluminum foil. Discard the thyme bundle. With an immersion blender, blend the vegetables until smooth. Adjust the seasoning with additional salt and pepper, to taste.
Remove the trussing string, slice across the grain into 2-inch pieces and serve immediately with the vegetable gravy.
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