Yesterday, inspired by the photograph on the September cover of Cooking Light magazine, I prepared an Oven-Braised Pot Roast. The recipe was part of the magazine’s “Guide to Fall,” a season we really don’t have here in San Diego, but the photo made the dish so enticing, I simply had to make it.
The recipe was relatively straightforward: brown the meat well, briefly saute some pearl onions, garlic, and tomato paste, deglaze the pot with red wine, add stock followed by carrots, potatoes, and rosemary, cover, and cook at 325ºF for about 3 hours and 30 minutes. Over that low-and-slow cook-time, however, the braise filled our apartment with a mellow savory aroma that I haven’t experienced in quite some time.
It then struck me that I haven’t done an oven braise for at least a year or so; I’ve come to rely, perhaps too heavily, on my slow cooker or pressure cooker for post roasts and stews and neither one, especially the latter, makes for such an aromatic experience.
In addition to the aroma, the oven braising also produced a roast with far better texture and deeper flavor than either of the above appliances.
Now all I have to do is wait for cooler temperatures here in SD, or more likely adjust the AC, to start enjoying more of these fall/winter oven-braised dishes.