Original post- June 12, 2013
Don’t be scared of the title. I didn’t have Spaghetti and Roast together. I just couldn’t think of a catchy title so I was straightforward! I’m going to start up on recipes again and a review of all of the freezer meals. We have yet to begin the freezer meals so I’m just going to talk about my nightly cooking right now.
Sunday night I was busy with prepping the freezer meals. I was on day two and a prisoner in my own kitchen. I felt like I was trying to claw my way out of a hole. I severely underestimated how disorganized I was with the freezer meals. I’m usually a stickler for being organized! Either way, I had to try and get all of the meat into the freezer, but I just couldn’t seem to be gaining any ground. Around 6 PM or so I got frustrated and needed a break from cooking and freezing. I decided cooking and eating would be a good idea. My family thought so too since they had been smelling random food I was cooking all day and then getting their hands slapped when they tried to eat any of it. I grabbed a little of the raw ground beef from my “going to the freezer” stash and boiled some noodles. I had grabbed two baguettes at Sam’s Club because they were pretty cheap and bread is a staple in this house. (Also, I use it as bribery for my kids. If they eat their food, they get bread. I’m not afraid to admit that one bit!) I took one of the baguettes out of the bag, sliced it vertically and then again horizontally so that I had four (very large) pieces of bread. I lightly buttered them and threw them in the oven. I was too exhausted to bother with making a salad. I used the Baine sauce (I posted the recipe in a “spaghetti” blog earlier this year) and it was a hit. I’m not really surprised that the spaghetti nights go over so well. They usually do anyway. Normally I make a ton of food and we have leftovers, but I realized the leftovers were regularly going to waste so I have drastically cut down on how much I cook each night.
Yesterday, around noon, I remembered I had a roast in the fridge to cook. I was in a much better mood because I didn’t have any freezer cooking left. I still need to do all the baking, but I figure that will be my goal for this weekend. I wouldn’t mind having my husband here to keep the kids occupied while I’m trying to measure, sift, bake, etc. Anyhow, I got the crock-pot prepped and pulled out my trusty Better Homes & Gardens cookbook and got started. I decided while shopping Sunday evening that I was not going to purchase any pre-cut vegetables because I was trying to cut cost as much as possible. This was going to severely alter my prep time, but I wasn’t too worried as I had plenty of time before the roast absolutely had to be started. If you’ve read this blog in the past, you realize that I have a hatred for prep times. They’re completely unreasonable! Anyway, I got to work washing the potatoes, celery, and carrots and peeling the top few layers off the onion. I went to dry off my celery because chopping a wet vegetable with a very sharp object with wet hands is just asking for trouble.
Problem number 1: I have no paper towels left after my freezer frenzy on Sunday. Crap! Then I remember I just restocked the drawer in the kitchen with hand towels. Crisis diverted! I dried everything off and reached for the cutting board, my knife and my peeler.
Problems number 2, 3, and 4: They were all in the sink or dishwasher and were also victims to my freezer frenzy. Oh and who forgot to start the dishwasher the day before? This girl… Figures. I decide to search for my paring knife that disappeared over a year ago. I’ve looked for this thing countless times and blamed my husband every time for losing it. By the grace of God, that sucker popped up in the same place I always look. I grabbed it and started peeling. (Which by the way, the only thing I could think the whole time was how I was going to explain to Russ how I found the knife and tell him he was right…)
It took forever to peel and chop all the veggies, but I eventually got all of them and the roast and the “sauce” recipe started. For some reason I decided to put an extra 1/4 cup of water into the crock pot. I have never done this before, but I’ve thought about it many times in the past. After last night, I will forever use that extra water. The roast was the most tender it has ever been. Russ and the kids raved about it and gobbled it up. I also made enough vegetables that I didn’t need a side dish. Russ baked the second baguette the same way as I did Sunday night and we all had plenty to eat.
Tonight we are having BBQ stuffed baked potatoes. I will post more about it tomorrow.
I want to stress that the following recipe came from the 14th Edition of the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. I don’t know how all the copyright type stuff works with recipes, but I’m going to be careful about it either way.
Beef Pot Roast
1-2 1/2 to 3 lb boneless beef chuck pot roast
4 medium baking potatoes (or sweet potatoes) OR 1 lb tiny new potatoes
1 lb carrots or 6 mdm parsnips, peeled and cut into 2 in pieces
2 small onions, cut into wedges (I just always use one medium to large sized one)
2 stalks celery, bias-sliced into 1 inch pieces
3/4 cup of water (I personally used 1 Cup and noticed a big difference in the tenderness of the roast)
1 T Worcestershire sauce
1 t instant beef bouillon granules
1 t dried, crushed basil
1/2 t salt
Trim fat from meat. Place vegetables in a 4 1/2 or 5-quart slow cooker. Cut meat to fit, if necessary; place on top of vegetables. Combine the water, Worcestershire sauce, bouillon granules, basil and salt. Add to cooker. Cover and cook on low-heat setting 9-11 hours or on high-heat setting for 4.5-5.5 hours. Serve. (There are also oven directions and a gravy, but the recipe above is the way my family likes it.)