French-Style Pot Roast with Carrots, Mushrooms and Pearl Onions
Sometimes I forget how much I like a good pot roast. Perfect for a Sunday dinner especially in the fall and winter months. This dish is somewhere between a beef stew and a Boeuf Bourguignon and is best served with potatoes or buttered noodles.
1 boneless beef chuck (4 to 5 pounds), pulled apart into 2 pieces and fat trimmed
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 bottle red wine (750 ml), medium-bodied (like Côtes du Rhône)
10 sprigs fresh parsley leaves
2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
Ground black pepper
4 ounces bacon, preferably thick cut, cut into 1/4-inch pieces crosswise
1 medium onion, chopped fine (about 1 cup)
3 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1 tablespoon)
1 tablespoon unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
4 medium carrots, peeled and cut on bias into 1 1/2-inch pieces
2 cups frozen pearl onions
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons sugar
10 ounces white mushrooms, wiped clean, stems trimmed, sliced into thirds
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1. Pull the roast apart at the natural seam and trim away large knobs of fat from each half. Season meat with kosher salt, place on wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet, and let rest at room temperature for 1 hour.
2. Using kitchen twine, tie parsley sprigs, thyme sprigs, and bay leaves into bundle; set aside.
3. Pat beef dry with paper towels and season generously with pepper. Tie three pieces of kitchen twine around each piece of meat to keep it from falling apart.
4. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 300 degrees. Cook bacon in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 6 to 8 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towel-lined plate and reserve.
5. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat; return Dutch oven to medium-high heat and heat until fat begins to smoke. Add beef to pot and brown well on all sides, 8 to 10 minutes total. Transfer beef to large plate and set aside.
6. Reduce heat to medium-low; add onion and ¼ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to soften, 5-6 minutes. Add garlic and reserved bacon; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in flour and cook until incorporated, about 1 minute. Slowly whisk in wine, scraping up any browned bits, and simmer over medium heat until thickened and slightly reduced, about 15 minutes.
7. Stir in the broths and tied and herb bundle, scraping bottom of pan with wooden spoon to loosen browned bits. Return roast and any accumulated juices to pot; increase heat to high and bring liquid to simmer, then place large sheet of foil over pot and cover tightly with lid. Set pot in oven and cook for 2 hours, using tongs to turn beef halfway through. Stir in the carrots and continue to cook in the oven, covered, until the meat is very tender and a dinner fork slips easily in and out of meat 1 – 1 ½ hours longer.
8. While meat cooks, bring pearl onions, butter, sugar, and 1/2 cup water to boil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook until onions are tender, 5 to 8 minutes. Uncover, increase heat to medium-high, and cook until all liquid evaporates, 3 to 4 minutes. Add mushrooms and 1/4 teaspoon table salt; cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are browned and glazed, 8 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
9. Transfer beef to cutting board; tent with foil to keep warm. Allow braising liquid to settle about 5 minutes; then, using wide, shallow spoon, skim fat off surface. Remove herb bundle and bring sauce to a strong simmer, uncovered, over medium-high heat and cook until thickened and reduced to about 3 cups, about 15-20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
10. Remove kitchen twine from meat and discard. Using carving knife, cut meat against grain into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Divide meat among warmed bowls or transfer to platter; arrange carrots and onion mixture around meat, pour sauce on top, and sprinkle with minced parsley. Serve with buttered noodles or mashed potatoes.