Pot Roast of Beef with Red Wine

Serves 4 to 6


To make this a complete meal, add some vegetables to the casserole 1-1/2 hours before the end of cooking. I'd suggest quartered carrots with celery root or turnip, cut into chunks. The vegetables will color deep red in the gravy and taste delicious.

1 piece of beef chuck or round (about 3 pounds)
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 pound thickly sliced bacon, cut in 1/4-inch dicev 1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
Bouquet garni made of 1 bay leaf, 2 to 3 sprigs basil, and
     2 to 3 sprigs marjoram
1 bottle (750 ml) red wine

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Roll and tie the roast neatly with string. Mix the flour on a plate with the cloves, cinnamon, and a half teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Coat the meat in the flour mixture, patting with your hands so it adheres.

Heat the oil in a casserole, add the meat, and brown it very thoroughly on all sides over medium heat, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the meat and wipe out the pan if there are black specks. Add the bacon and fry it until the fat runs, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the onion and fry, stirring, until the bacon and onion are browned, 5 to 7 minutes longer. Put the meat back with the garlic and bouquet garni. Pour in the wine, cover the casserole, and bring it to a boil. Transfer it to the oven and cook until the meat is so tender it can almost be cut with a spoon, 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 hours. Turn the beef from time to time during cooking, adding water if the wine evaporates—the meat should always be half covered.

Transfer the beef to a serving platter and keep it warm in a low oven. Strain the cooking juices and taste them. If necessary, boil the gravy to reduce and concentrate it, up to 15 minutes. Taste again and adjust the seasoning. Discard the bouquet garni and trussing strings and carve the meat in generous slices. Spoon some gravy over the meat and pass the rest separately.

Getting ahead: Pot roast improves on reheating, so make it up to 2 days ahead.


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ISBN: 1-58479-328-7
Recipe reprinted by permission.


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