Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sunday Supper

Happiness is a lot of things for me. Hearing a great song I'd forgotten come on my ipod, visiting a friend I hadn't seen in ages and feeling like no time had passed, remembering a kiss from a tall, dark and handsome man while trekking home through the snow. And naturally food.

When I was little one of my least favorite meals was pot roast. Usually stringy, somewhat dry and filled with my most abhorred childhood vegetable, cooked carrots. But the next day my mom would take the (usually plentiful) leftovers and turn them into pot roast tacos. Toasted hard corn shells, the roast reheated to an almost crunchy quality, the carrots boiled into an indistinguishable spicy mash. Top with some salsa, guacamole and cheese and it was heaven. But you can't have the pot roast tacos without having the pot roast first, so tonight I decided to make the first step to delicious tacos- the roast.

Now this is no typical roast. I covered the beef in an allspice, clove and cardamom blend, and decided to braise in the very interesting Rogue Dead Guy Portlandia Ale. That's right... a beer created just to promote the show and our after party gift from the premiere. Described as a "nutty twist to a traditional English brown ale- with hazelnut aromas, a rich, nutty flavor, and smooth malty finish," I thought it would compliment the roast perfectly. Served alongside some ricotta oregano polenta and sauteed collards and garlic, it was a delicious dinner that made me just happy to be home, to be warm, to have some great new memories and possibly some exciting future endeavors.

Spiced Pot Roast
1 lbs. chuck roast
1 medium onion
2 garlic cloves, diced
1/2 c. tomato puree
1 pint brown ale
1 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp ground clove
1/2 tsp. cardamom
4 juniper berries

1. Combine allspice, cloves and cardamom. Salt and pepper the roast and then roll in the spice mixture- be sure to cover all sides. Heat oil in a dutch oven, and sear off all sides of the roast. Remove and let sit. Add garlic and onions and remaining spice mixture and cook until translucent. Add tomatos, juniper berries, roast and beer.

2. Cover and let sit at medium-medium low heat for 2 hours. Roast should be fork tender. Taste for salt and serve with collards and polenta.


  1. So is this an improvement on Mom's standard? How did it (and tomorrow's tacos) turn out?

  2. Well... it had more spice- imagine the short ribs as a pot roast. Tacos are for tonight or tomorrow. I'll keep you updated:)



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