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Braised chuck roast with root veggies

Braised Chuck Roast with Miso, Red Wine & Alliums

Braised chuck roast with root veggies

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Intro/Inspiration

I was inspired to create a braise that was A) easy and B) uber-delicious from a version I saw Michael Pollan and Samin Nosrat create together in his documentary, Cooked.

There are a few reasons for busy people to love braises:

  1. They work with cheap, tough cuts of meat – chuck roast (grass-fed!!) can regularly be found for around $5-6/lb.
  2. They may take several hours but are almost entirely hands-off, hurray! This makes them perfect for weekend afternoons.
  3. The long cook time infuses incredible flavor and juiciness into the recipe.
  4. It makes a really large portion which is perfect for either meal prep or having company over.

Sourcing

I sourced my grass-fed/pastured chuck roast from New Seasons where they had a Carman Ranch option. I love this company! Pastured beef is allowed to live and eat in its natural state – this makes it a happier animal with less stress hormones in its body, less likely to be sick or diseased, far leaner, and more similar in nutrient profile to wild game – including those anti-inflammatory Omega-3’s. Grain-fed cattle have their Omega-3’s destroyed, and are far higher in overall fat + pro-inflammatory Omega-6’s.

All of my alliums in this recipe (onions, shallots, garlic and leeks) were from our CSA at Stoneboat Farms here in the Portland area. Alliums are something that most farmer’s markets have year-round.

I threw in a parsnip and parsley root from my CSA also. I was out of carrots so I grabbed a couple organic ones from New Seasons while getting the meat. (I picked up fresh horseradish root also and grated it over the top – but that’s totally optional!)

I used a red wine from (no surprise here) Walla Walla – in this case since I was cooking with it, a less expensive Garnacha from College Cellars.

Chef’s Tricks

Braised Chuck Roast with Veggies

A few notes to help you get this recipe perfect, the very first time!

  • Make sure to cut up the roast into large chunks and sear it on all sides first. This really helps amp up the umami flavor profile in the final roast.
  • I recommend deglazing your pan with the red wine, not the veggie broth. The more acidic wine does a better job of unsticking those gorgeous brown bits – and also it helps evaporate the actual ethanol a little faster
  • I have started making it a habit to use organic veggie broth over chicken or beef broth, except when its homemade. I’ve read some troubling research on the types and parts of animals used for broth so I just prefer to flavor my meat dishes with actual meat, that I know where it came from. Plus, you really can’t complain about more veggies in your life – even if its in the form of broth!
  • I used 1/2 can of diced tomatoes in this recipe but next time I plan to experiment with 1/2 cup of fresh OJ. Feel free to interchange, as long as your recipe has *some* sort of acid!

Macronutrient Information

I manually calculated the calories and macronutrients (protein, carbs and fat) for this recipe using the specific brands of ingredients listed in this recipe, and an app called My Net Diary.

This app has over 9M users and contains a food database with more than 940,000 food items, 680K of which have been professional verified (the rest have been contributed by other users). I LOVE this app because it allows you to create combined nutrition info for your own recipes. I use the “Pro” version but a free version is also available.

Although I’ve found this method to be far more accurate than using an automated Nutrition WordPress plugin, there is still the standard disclaimer that your mileage may (can and will) vary. This is for the following reasons:

  1. The brands of items you get may be different, and with animal products in particular, protein and fat content and vary wildly.
  2. Your portion sizes may be different than mine. You may decide you need 1.5 of these servings to fill you up
  3. Human bodies are not the same as machines or engines, and food is far more than just fuel. Regardless what we swallow, what we digest and absorb is going to vary wildly from person to person and even the same person, day to day. Things like sleep, stress, hydration, heat/cold, exercise, and gut biome all play a huge role in nutrient absorption and bio-availability.

My nutrition info is based on the roast by itself, with no base (no fettuccine as shown). It is also based on the root veggies I used, which are from the umbellifer family and are very low-starch. If you use potatoes, of course, your carbs will go up! Not that that is a bad thing. πŸ™‚

Food As Medicine

This is an important component to each of my Recipe posts because food is SO much more than simple fuel. It is not just about calories in and calories out. It’s far more than even macronutrients, although those are certainly crucial to our health. Food has thousands of chemicals, hormones, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that our body also uses and needs.

What I love most about this recipe is that it is nourishing to the body AND to the soul. Comfort food has an emotional impact on us. It makes us FEEL full and satiated. It reminds us that we are humans, not machines. But unfortunately, a lot of comfort food is laden with fat and refined carbs (pasta carbonara anyone??)

Grass-fed meat braises, and bean braises, are two of my favorite comfort foods, because they are incredibly nourishing and ALSO taste incredibly decadent.

I mentioned about that pastured meat is 100% better for you than factory farmed meat. This recipe also has loads of alliums, which are the #1 anti-cancer vegetable family. I threw in some red miso as well, which has all the benefits you’d expect from a fermented food. (Great for your little friendly bacteria!)

Substitutions

Any kind of meat roast would work, though I prefer the “beefiness” of this recipe. You can substitute lamb or even pork shoulder if you like. I wouldn’t recommend it with chicken thighs because the cooking time will overwhelm them and dry them out.

If you’re adamantly opposed to red wine (even given that the ethanol will 100% evaporate out over 3 hours of cooking), you can simply increase that amount of veggie broth, and consider adding 1T of white or red vinegar.

Any sort of root veggies work well thrown into this braise during the last half hour. I used carrots, parnsips and parsley root (yes! parsley has a carrot-like root that you can eat!) That is what the nutrition info is based on. If you use potatoes or something starchier of course, the carb count will go up. πŸ™‚

Also, this recipe is pictured over some fettuccine but you could easily have it in a bowl by itself, dunk some crusty bread in it, or have it over rice or polenta. The nutrition info is based on the recipe itself, without any pasta etc.

Keeping/Freezing

This roast will keep for about a week in the fridge as long as its in airtight containers and kept cold.

Since it contains no dairy, it will also freeze well (similar to a chili). You can freeze it also in airtight individual serving containers for up to 3 months.

Gear I Used

One one real piece of gear I recommend for this recipe and that is the shallow cast iron braiser I used. I LOVE it. It’s not nearly as expensive as a Staub or Le Creuset – those can run upwards of $150-200, this one is only around $50. It’s USA-made, the perfect cute little depth for both braising and serving, stove and oven proof, enameled cast iron for easier clean up, AND, the lid has a built-in braiser (these are little lumps on the underside of the lid where steam accumulates and drops back down on the meat – genius!)

You can get it here! Bruntmor Shallow Dutch Oven

Wine Pairings

I recommend you just finish the bottle of red that you used to cook with πŸ™‚ But any sort of syrah, cab, or grenache/garnacha would work great! In this photo, I am showing an extra special wine by Saviah Cellars in Walla Walla, a “Stonespeak” Syrah. These grapes grow in very rocky soil and the fruit ends up very small and intensely flavored. It results in an equally intense wine, which expresses gorgeously with Syrah grapes! This is not the wine I used to braise with, but it would be a lovely pairing.

Braised Chuck Roast with Veggies

Braised Chuck Roast with Miso, Red Wine & Alliums



Braised chuck roast with root veggies

Ingredients

3 lb pastured/grass-fed chuck roast

1 yellow onion

1 red onion

1 shallot

1/2 leek

4-6 cloves garlic

1T avocado oil

1.5 cups organic vegetable broth

1/2 cup dry red wine

4T red miso

1/2 can (~7 oz) diced tomatoes with juice

1T tamari

3-4 sprigs fresh savory herbs: I recommend thyme, rosemary and/or oregano

1-2 cups roughly chopped/quartered root veggies of choice: carrots, parnsips, rutabaga, parsley root, waxy potatoes, etc

Instructions

1

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

2

Prep your alliums: Quarter and slice onions and shallot (large is fine, they’ll disintegrate during the braise). Cut off dark green portion of leek then cut white portion in half lengthwise. Rinse outer layers of leek for dirt then thinly slice into half-moons. Smash and peel the garlic cloves.

3

Remove strings from roast if present and cut into large chunks about 3-5″ each.

4

Heat avocado oil in large dutch oven with lid over medium-high heat. When shimmering, add roast chunks and sear on all sides, working in batches if necessary so they aren’t touching. Sear should take 3-4 minutes each side until golden-dark brown. Remove to plate as they are done.

5

Turn heat down to medium and add alliums. Saute until softened and fragrant, about 5 minutes.

6

Deglaze the pan with the red wine. Pour in and let sizzle, scraping all brown bits up as they soften. Let bubble for a minute or two to reduce and burn off the ethanol (alcohol) content.

7

Add roast chunks back to pan including any juices that have accumulated. Nestle the chunks into the alliums.

8

Pour vegetable broth over the whole thing. Add in your tablespoons of miso, nestling them between chunks of roast. Pour 1/2 can of diced tomatoes with some juice into pan (also can use 1/2 cup of OJ if preferred). Add the tamari, drizzling over the meat. Finally, nestle your fresh herb sprigs down in the juice.

9

Cover with lid and place in oven. Let braise for an hour. (Set a timer.)

10

Remove pan from oven, take off lid and turn meat pieces over. You can stir the sauce a bit if you like also. The meat will still be tough at this point. Put lid back on and place back in oven.

11

Let braise another hour and do the same thing – take out briefly to turn the meat. The meat should be softening by this point, but is not falling apart. Total braise time at this point is 2 hours.

12

Let braise another 45 minutes. During this portion, peel and/or chop/quarter your root veggies as desired. After 45 minutes, remove again and nestle the root veggies into the liquid.

13

Braise (still covered) another 30 minutes to cook the root veggies. Total braise time at this point will be a little over 3 hours.

14

Remove the roast when the meat is tender and falling apart. Roasts need about 1 hour per pound of meat, so a 3 pound roast should take 3 hours + a little extra to cook the root veggies.

15

Remove the meat and shred it roughly on a cutting board, removing any large pieces of fat or connective tissue that did not dissolve. While shredding, place dutch oven over the stove and turn to medium heat. Let sauce simmer to reduce it a bit. Return shredded meat to sauce when you’re ready (I simmered it about 5 minutes).

16

Serve immediately either by itself, with croutons on top, with crusty sourdough bread, or over pasta or polenta to sop up the juices. Shown here over fettuccine and garnished with fresh tarragon, parsley, and zested horseradish root. Enjoy!

Nutrition Per Serving

Calories
330

Protein
21g

Carbs
5g

Fiber
1g

Fat
24g

Tags:

Dinner In Provence
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