For years my pot roast has featured stew meat, potatoes, carrots and celery in dark beef stock thickened with roux. It’s a recipe that I imagine serves a warming hut at a ski resort in Utah and if memory serves that’s where I ate it for lunch (I was a chairlift loader @ Beaver Mountain). That recipe creates a good stew style pot roast that can be served from a large pot with a ladle from a chow line.
This Ancho Pot Roast is different, it’s more about the meat and less about the rest. I was up early on New Years morning and had breakfast solo in the “Coastal” restaurant at Shutters on The Beach. When the waiter brought my coffee I asked if I might see the chefs cookbook, “Shutters Summertime” and he was happy to bring it over.
This Ancho Pot Roast recipe has been inspired by the “Mexican Pot Roast” recipe in that book. We’ve found an audience for this dish for both lunch and dinner at Estia’s Little Kitchen, offered with corn tortillas and an avocado salad with queso fresco it serves as a complete meal that requires long cooking time in advance, however calls for little more than heat and serve at meal time.
Ingredients (serves 10):
12 lb beef brisket (trim in advance)
4 large Spanish onions, large dice
5 celery stalks, large dice
5 carrots, large dice
1 cup garlic cloves, cut in half
5 jalapeno, stems & seeds removed, quartered
1 cup raisins
2 cups fresh mango, diced
1 can whole peeled tomato (16oz)
6 ancho chilis
1 bottle red wine (750 ml)
1 quart orange juice
2 cups chicken stock
1 cup monteca (or bacon fat)
4 tablespoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1/4 cup fresh oregano (chopped)
4 tablespoons salt
Start with the liquids and chilis in a sauce pan, bring to a boil and reduce to simmer for 30 minutes. Transfer to a blender and puree. Take care not to cover the top and seal completely, leave the hole open and cover with a kitchen towel instead. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Season the beef on a cutting board with all dry ingredients.
Place half of the vegetables in a large roasting pan with 4 tablespoons of the monteca, stir over medium flame for 10 minutes. Next, remove the vegetables and place the beef in the pan with remaining monteca, roll all sides of the piece until completely browned (10-15 min). Now add all of the vegetables and the raisins and mango. Be sure to pour any remaining dry ingredients into the pan, now add the chili sauce. Wrap the roasting pan with foil tightly, sealing the roast for the oven. Place in the oven for 3 hours, then turn off the oven and allow the roast to rest as the oven cools for another hour.
Remove from the oven and pull the beef from the pan then strain the stock. Hold the vegetables in one container, the stock in another and place the beef on a tray to chill in the fridge.
When it’s time to serve (the following day) remove the fat from the top of the stock and bring it to a simmer in a sauce pan. Then slice the beef into thin strips against the grain. Also bring the vegetables to a simmer on the stove top. Place the sliced beef in the stock to warm.
Plate the Pot Roast with a spoon full of the vegetable and garnish with cilantro. Serve along side warm corn tortillas and a salad of avocado, red onion, thinly sliced romaine, diced red pepper, and a pinch of queso fresco.
Squeeze lemon and extra virgin olive oil. Season with cilantro, salt, and red chili flakes.