This Barefoot Contessa company pot roast takes an inexpensive beef chuck roast, a bottle of red wine, a little brandy, carrots, onions, celery, leeks, and tomatoes and transforms them into a meal worthy of a dinner party. And leftovers to last the week.
Ina Garten's Company Pot Roast
- Quick Glance
- 1 H
- 3 H, 45 M
- Serves 8
Preheat the oven to 325°F (160°C).
Pat the roast dry with paper towels. Season the roast all over with 1 tablespoon salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper. Place the flour on a plate and dredge the roast in flour, turning to coat all sides, including the ends.
In a large Dutch oven over medium heat, warm 2 tablespoons oil. Add the roast and sear, without moving it, until nicely browned, 5 to 8 minutes. Turn and sear the opposite side. Then turn and sear the ends, 4 to 5 minutes each. Using tongs, transfer the roast to a large plate.
Add 2 tablespoons oil to the Dutch oven and keep it over medium heat. Add the carrots, onions, celery, leeks, garlic, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes, until tender but not browned.
Carefully add the wine and Cognac and bring to a boil.
Add the tomatoes, chicken stock, bouillon cube, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Tie the thyme and rosemary together with kitchen string and add to the pot. Return the roast to the pot, bring to a boil, and cover. Place in the oven for 1 hour.
Turn the heat down to 250°F (120°C) to keep the sauce at a gentle simmer. Continue to roast until the meat is fork-tender or the pot roast registers 160°F (71°C), about 1 1/2 hours, for a total of 2 1/2 hours in the oven.
Transfer the roast to a cutting board. Remove the herb bundle and discard. Skim and discard as much fat as possible from the surface of the sauce.
Transfer half the sauce and vegetables to a blender or a food processor fitted with the steel blade and puree until smooth.
Pour the puree back into the pot, place on the stove top over low heat, and return the sauce to a simmer. Meanwhile, place 2 tablespoons flour and the butter in a small bowl and mash them together with a fork. Stir the butter mixture into the sauce and simmer, stirring constantly, until thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, taste, and adjust the seasonings accordingly.
Remove the strings from the roast and slice the meat. Pile it onto a platter and serve it warm with the sauce spooned over it. (You may have some leftover sauce, which you can cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Rewarm it gently over low heat and, if desired, add a splash of red wine just before serving. It’s delicious over pasta.) Originally published May 5, 2008.
Slow Cooker Variation
To make this company pot roast in your slow cooker, follow steps 1 through 4, place the pot roast and vegetables in your slow cooker, and then proceed as follows…
5. Transfer the vegetable and booze mixture to the slow cooker and add the tomatoes, chicken stock, bouillon cube, if using, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Tie the thyme and rosemary together with kitchen string and add to the slow cooker. Place the roast in the slow cooker and cover. Cook until the roast is fork-tender, on low for 8 to 10 hours or high for 5 to 6 hours.
6. Transfer the roast to a cutting board. Remove the herb bundle and discard. Skim off as much fat as possible from the surface of the sauce.
7. Transfer half the sauce and vegetables to a blender or a food processor fitted with the steel blade and puree until smooth.
8. Pour the puree and the remainder of the sauce into a large pot, place on the stove top over low heat, and return the sauce to a simmer. Place 2 tablespoons flour and the butter in a small bowl and mash them together with a fork. Stir the butter mixture into the sauce and simmer, stirring constantly, until thickened, which ought to take about 2 minutes. If the sauce is too thick, go ahead and thin with additional chicken stock. Taste and adjust the seasonings accordingly.
9. Remove the strings from the roast and slice the meat. Pile it onto a platter and serve it warm with the sauce spooned over it.
Recipe Testers' Reviews
This is an elevated pot roast, one indeed worthy of company. While the prep time for this recipe can seem a bit daunting, it’s well worth the work assembling your mise en place as the recipe will come together easily from there.
Pureeing the sauce produces a silky, thick gravy with tender vegetables nestled throughout. As the parent of a young child who insisted I pick out the vegetables but who scarfed down the pureed vegetables and roast, it was a revelation.
I used a red Burgundy blend and 1 tsp Better Than Bouillon (roasted chicken).
This was SO fantastic and our house smelled delicious for hours. It served 4 adults (2 who ran a marathon yesterday!) and 2 children with ZERO meat leftover although we did have a lot of sauce leftover to be used with egg noodles or polenta tomorrow. It was succulent and fork tender. We hardly used a steak knife to cut into it.
All browning times were perfect, even with such a large chunk of meat! I didn't use a bouillon cube but I did use a better than bouillon gel for the broth.
My butter mixture melted into the sauce in less than 1 minute. The sauce was seriously luxurious and very tasty. I can't wait to reuse it tomorrow! I will make this again and again!