Sunday, February 27, 2011

Roast in the crockpot?

If you're taking advantage of the free potatoes and onions at shaw's this week here are some good tips if you're on the go like me and like using the crockpot.

1.) General rule of thumb you want to add enough water, beef stock, or beef broth to half cover the roast itself. Why? Because a crockpot is designed to simmer liquid and if you don't you'll end up with a really dry roast. Also flip it about half way through.

2.) Put the fatty side down. Especially if you're making gravy. This cooks the fat at a hotter temperature so it breaks down faster.

3.) Use root vegetables with beef. Potatoes, parsnips, onions, and carrots are really good choices. Mushrooms are good too. The above picture I have potatoes, onions and carrots in my crockpot.

4.) Save the leftover broth. Freeze it for a good go to base for soups and stews. Also an excellent way to get rid of the leftovers.

5.) Spices? I like to use a lot of pepper base spice mixes when I'm making beef. A little garlic powder is also nice but don't use to much of that a pinch or two will do you.

What about gravy? If you're like my mom and most of my family homemade gravy is complicated. Haha. Guys i love yah.

Here's a simple way to make about 2 cups of gravy. Plenty for even a big family.

1/2 Cup butter
1/2 Cup flour
2 1/2 cup broth

Melt the butter in a small pot.
Stir in the flour.
let the butter and flour combine until they are a golden brown color. THIS IS VERY HOT! BE VERY CAREFUL! This is called Roux. you can let it get darker but I like a nice golden brown, it has a certain nutty flavor that gets stronger the darker you let it get.
carefully and slowly incorporate the broth.
Let this mixture come up to a slight boil, take a quarter of the pan off the heat.
you will see flour come up to the top, spoon it off.
and with that you're gravy should be finished!

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