I could hardly wait to get home from work to check on what I had left in the crock pot! I woke up a little early just so I could put our dinner on before I left for work! When the alarm first went off, I wanted to crawl under the covers and pretend I still had hours left to sleep. Then I remembered the beautiful, fresh cut beef pot roast in the fridge just waiting to be seasoned. Even first thing in the morning I can’t deny the excitement I have to season a huge hunk of meat!!
I have been craving pot roast for a few weeks now. We had a little accident the last time I attempted to cook one. A while back, I had gone to the grocery store and to my astonishment, they had a BOGO free special on beef roasts. I bought two! Fast-forward to about a month ago. It was a Monday night and we were meeting with our life group. On the way home I remembered that I had forgotten to take the frozen roast out of the sink where I had placed it for a short time to help it thaw quickly so it would be ready to go into the crock pot in the A.M. “No big deal,” I thought to myself. I nonchalantly mentioned to to Grayson who was much more alarmed that I was. “OMG…no you didn’t?!” he pleaded…or should I say he hoped. I didn’t put the pieces together. Was he scared he would get food poisoning? I know it isn’t be best way to thaw meat but geez! It wasn’t clicking…
Until he mentioned her name…Ellie. Our sweet, loving, timid 70 pound labradoodle.
Sincere panic swept through me. Mainly because we have light tan couches that are only a year and a half old. Ellie is not allowed on the couches while Mommy and Daddy are home. However, as evident by the black hair that my couch seems to grow during my work hours, we know she sets up shop on the love seat as soon as we leave.
Images of her lying on my pretty much brand new tan couch chewing a massive piece of raw, bloody meat flashed through my mind. I imagined her sitting there like she owned the place and flashing me an “I dare you to take this from me” look when I walked in to the house. Prepared for the worst, I walked into the house.
Ellie always meets us at the mud room door, half asleep, and greets us with a cold nose and wagging tail. This welcome home was not the “I just woke up from a 2 hour nap” welcome that I’m used to. She was wide awake and very talkative. I bent down closer to her and the smell of raw meat brought back those terrifying images of a ruined couch. I looked at Grayson and all I could manage to croak out was “yep.”
I turned the corner into our living room which is completely open to the kitchen. The love seat and couch looked totally fine. No one was more surprised than me! Thinking maybe she hadn’t found the meat in the sink, I ran over to the kitchen in hopes it would still be there. I wasn’t so lucky. I walked around the couch and found half of my roast lying in the floor. She had gnawed and chewed all over that hunk of meat! She had eaten half of it. Lucky for us (AND HER), there were no traces on either of the couches. It is almost like she thought it would be best to stay on the hardwood. I joked to Grayson that we should still cook it because she had done a phenomenal job of tenderizing the meat, much better than if I used my tenderizing hammer.
That happened about a month ago and I’ve been wanting pot roast ever since!
I don’t get too fancy with this recipe. Sometimes I will add potatoes and carrots in with it, but I didn’t have any on hand this time.
I start by placing the roast in the crock pot. I cover both sides with generous portions of olive oil. Next, I add all of the spices. I use pepper, salt, seasoning salt, thyme, corriander, oregano, cumin, and just a few red pepper flakes. I’m not sure how much of each, but I’m very generous with these as well (see picture below). Don’t be scared! Flip it over and repeat on the opposite side. I set my crock pot on low and leave. It typically cooks for 8 hours on low but I recommend turning it down lower for the last three hours of cooking.
I left for the day and entrusted Ellie to keep an eye on it 😉
That afternoon I walked into the mud room and was greeted by Ellie and the most fragrant aroma of meat and spices. The closer I got to the kitchen, the better it smelled! Grayson said “I checked on the roast. I kinda poked it with my finger and it dag-on nearly went through it!”
I settled in to make our side dish. Mashed cauliflower…mmmm. This is a favorite in our house and it doesn’t leave me feeling guilty about filling my tummy full of carbs. I chopped a head of fresh cauliflower into small pieces and started it boiling in a pot. It boils until it is soft. Once soft, the water is drained away and the cauliflower is mashed up. To that, I add salt, pepper, butter, Parmesan cheese, and a little bit of shredded mozzarella. Mix it up and you have a super cheesy side dish that mimics potatoes without the guilt!
If you are feeling adventurous, you could make gravy from all the moisture that is left in the bottom of the crock pot. I didn’t venture into that this time though. I was starving and just too impatient to wait for it to thicken.
No doodle-disaster this time! Ellie did a great job cooking this one for us 😉