Growing up, many Sunday night dinners were enjoyed at my Grandparent’s house. My Grandmother was a lovely country cook and it seems like there was always a fresh pie just waiting to be gobbled up for dessert (I wish I loved pie then as much as I do now).
It’s a bit different these days. While Hubs, Chelsea and I eat together almost every night, we really don’t include our extended family as much as we should. This weekend, I decided to resurrect the tradition and invited my parents over for Sunday dinner. It was a dismal weekend here in Nova Scotia, dark and stormy with lots of rain. The smell of a pot roast, bubbling away in the oven with onions, carrots and herbs was what was needed to transform our house into a warm, inviting home, ready for extra family.
This dinner was a spur of the moment decision, so I had no time to thaw a roast from the freezer. I headed into Walmart Sunday morning to pick one up, as well as some veggies and dinner rolls (and avoiding clearance Halloween candy). When Walmart Supercentre came to our area, I was surprised and pleased to find out that they would carry fresh, top-quality Canadian Your Fresh Market Angus beef, Maple Leaf chicken and pork cuts, as well as hand-trimmed 100% Canadian salmon. They carry many of the basic cuts, like this blade roast, at very economical prices, everyday. The roast itself was just over $11, so with all the sides and rolls, this complete dinner for 5 cost about $18, or about $3.50 per person.
I haven’t made a pot roast in a bit, so I used this recipe from the Walmart Recipe Centre as a guide and added a couple of my own touches. Paired up with mashed potatoes, buttercup squash and creamed spinach, this was a meal that had a whole lot of love put into it.
My Pot Roast
- Approx 3 lb boneless beef roast (blade or chuck work great)
- 2 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1 tsp each salt and black pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 2 medium onions, halved
- 3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 2-3″ lengths
- 3 whole, peeled tomatoes (I used canned)
- 2 cups beef stock (your own, or I used a combination of water and Bovril)
- 4 stems of fresh thyme
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp cold water
In a Dutch oven or large pot that can go stovetop to oven, heat the canola oil and then add the onion halves and let them slightly brown to add some flavour to the oil. While the onions are cooking, put the flour, salt, pepper and garlic powder in a large zip top bag. Dry off the roast beef with some paper towel and then put it in the bag and shake it up to ensure the entire surface is fully coated. Remove the onions from the oil and carefully add the roast to the very hot pan, allowing each side to get nice and browned (don’t move it around much, you are looking to get some deep brown bits here). Add in the carrots and return the onions to the pot. Add the tomatoes, thyme and beef stock. Cover and then pop that baby into a 275 degree oven and let simmer for about 3 hours.
When the roast is done, remove the meat and carrots to a plate and cover with foil. Discard the thyme stems. Put the roast liquid back on the stove top and let it reduce for 10 minutes or so. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and cold water well and then pour it into the bubbling liquid, stirring to thicken. If the roast had been tied, cut the strings at this point, and serve with it’s delicious gravy and all the sides you want.
Is it lunchtime yet? Those leftovers are MINE!
Disclosure: This post has been sponsored by Walmart. All opinions are mine, honest and genuine.