Coffee-Braised Pot Roast with Caramelized Onions
This recipe is reminiscent of a pot roast made with onion-soup mix, but the flavors are true and pureâ€”and nobody misses the excess sodium.
To make ahead: The pot roast will keep, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Reheat meat slices and sauce, covered, in the oven, microwave or on the stovetop.
1 4-pound beef chuck roast (see Tip), trimmed of fat
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 large onions, halved and thinly sliced (4 cups)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried thyme
3/4 cup strong brewed coffee
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons water
Preheat oven to 300Â°F.
Season beef with salt and pepper. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a Dutch oven or soup pot over medium-high heat. Add beef and cook, turning from time to time, until well browned on all sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
Add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the pot. Add onions, reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring often, until softened and golden, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and thyme; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in coffee and vinegar; bring to a simmer. Return the beef to the pot and spoon some onions over it. Cover and transfer to the oven.
Braise the beef in the oven until fork-tender but not falling apart, 2-1/2 to 3 hours. Transfer beef to a cutting board, tent with foil and let rest for about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, skim fat from the braising liquid; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the cornstarch mixture and cook, whisking, until the gravy thickens slightly, about 1 minute. Season with pepper. Carve the beef and serve with gravy.
Makes 10 servings, about 3 ounces meat & 1/3 cup gravy each.
Per serving: 252 calories; 12 g fat (4 g sat, 6 g mono); 97 mg cholesterol; 5 g carbohydrate; 29 g protein; 0 g fiber; 172 mg sodium…sodium level seems rather high. Use salt substitute and check with your Dr. to determine appropriate sodium levels.
Shopping tip: Although it is not the leanest cut of beef, chuck is still our choice for pot roast because it doesn’t dry out during braising. You will find pockets of fat as you carve it, but they are easy to remove.
In Step 2, transfer the browned beef to a slow cooker. In Step 3, use just 1/2 cup coffee. Add the onion mixture to the slow cooker. In Step 4, cover and cook until beef is tender, 4-1/2 to 5 hours on High or 7 to 8 hours on Low. In Step 5, pour the liquid into a medium saucepan and continue as directed.