It may have been a deal-breaker when I learned Steve didn’t care for pot roast. He just doesn’t care for those stewed vegetables like potatoes, carrots, and such. Growing up north, both here and in England, we ate all kinds of stewed meats. As far as vegetables go, I love them any way they’re prepared.
I really had to figure out a way to make this traditional dish in a way that Steve would love it as much as I do. I believe I have the answer. The first order of business is to break out my Crockpot. This is my Open Face Pot Roast On Toasted Ciabatta Bread.
I’m serving this with a side of my Sautéed Spinach With Garlic. This recipe’s available by clicking the link at the bottom of this post.
Prep Time: 10 minutes (while the meat is searing, prep your veggies)
Cook Time: 8 hours 15 minutes (8 hours on high) (add an additional 15 minutes for making the gravy while toasting the ciabatta)
Total Time: 8 hours 25 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Equipment: 1 (7-quart) Crockpot, 1 (10-cup) food processor, 1 (12-inch) cast-iron skillet, 1 (6-quart) saucepot, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, chef’s knife, Serrated knife.
1 (3-pound) top-cut brisket roast
2 tablespoons of Canola oil
2 tablespoons of Kosher salt
1 tablespoon of freshly ground black pepper
2 chopped large onions
4 ribs chopped celery with their leaves
1 pound of chopped organic multi-colored carrots (7 small carrots)
4 whole garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
3 tablespoons of fresh thyme leaves, roughly chopped
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons of freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
1/2 cup of beef stock, unsalted
1/2 cup of water
2 (10.5-ounce) cans of beef consommé
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon of water
1/4 cup of Kitchen bouquet seasoning
Italian flat-leaf parsley for garnish
1 heaping tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon of water
4 ciabatta rolls, sliced in half and toasted
8 tablespoons of butter, unsalted and softened
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
First, add 2 tablespoons of Canola oil to 1 sheet of paper towel. Using the oil-dampened paper towel, wipe down the bottom and sides of the cast-iron skillet. Preheat the oven over medium-high heat until the skillet is smoking hot. Carefully lay the roast into the pan. Sear the first side for 3 to 5 minutes. Once the meat releases, from the pan, without giving you any resistance flip and sear the other side for another 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a large plate. Set aside. While the pan is still over medium-high heat add 1/2 cup of beef stock. Using a wooden spoon, scrape the bits off the bottom of the skillet. Transfer the reserved *deglazing liquid to a small bowl. Set aside.
In the meantime, prep the carrots, celery, garlic, and onions. Transfer to the Crockpot. Add tomato paste, thyme, rosemary, bay leaves, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper. Place the seared brisket on top. Pour in the beef consommé, reserved *deglazing liquid, and a 1/2 cup of water.
Place the lid on the Crockpot and set to cook for 8 hours on high.
After 8 hours turn the Crockpot off and carefully remove the brisket. Remove and discard the sprigs of rosemary. Break up the roast into large pieces, transfer to a plate. Set aside.
Transfer the vegetables into a food processor. Pour the remaining cooking liquid from the Crockpot into a large saucepot. Purée all the vegetables then transfer them into the saucepot. Over medium heat allow the sauce to come up to a bubble then reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the browning seasoning (Kitchen bouquet) and simmer for 15 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch and 1 tablespoon of water (this is what’s known as a *cornstarch slurry) until the mixture is paste-like and smooth. Turn the heat back up to medium, add the *slurry, stirring occasionally, bring the sauce back up to a boil. Once the sauce thickens, reduce the heat to (lowest setting) warm. Carefully add the pot roast and cover.
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
For the Ciabatta rolls, using a serrated knife, slice each roll in half lenghthwise. Place 4 halves onto each rimmed baking sheet pan. Drizzled a little olive oil of each one, sprinkle with Kosher salt, and fresh ground pepper to taste. Transfer to the oven, bake for 7 to 10 minutes, or until golden brown.
All I do to serve this dish is to lay the toasted Ciabatta bread cut side up on a plate. Arrange a good helping of the pot roast onto the toasted slices of Ciabatta.
There you have it, my Open Face Pot Roast On Toasted Ciabatta Bread. Garnish with Italian flat-leaf parsley. Served with a side of my Sautéed Spinach With Garlic.
*Cornstarch slurry: A Cornstarch slurry is a mix equal parts cornstarch and water. Slurries are used to the thicken gravies or sauces.
*Deglaze is to dilute the meat sediments ( in a pan) in order a gravy or sauce, typically using wine or stock.