Main Courses

Dad’s Pot Roast

As I told you in my “About Me” post earlier this week, everyone in my family loves to cook. Growing up, my dad always made dinner every Wednesday night. I remember his signature dishes, like green pasta with turkey, like it was yesterday. Now that we are in and out of the house, cooking can be a wing-it situation at my parents’ house. But while I was home this January, my dad came home after a weekend trip to Costco with a huge chuck roast. To understand my confusion, my mom shops for beef, um, never. I barely remember eating it at home growing up. So I was very intrigued by this large beef roast. The next night, I watched my dad make Anne Burrell’s Pot Roast recipe… kind of. He used Anne Burrell’s recipe as a guide, but couldn’t find some of the correct ingredients at the grocery store. Instead of Jerusalem artichokes, he used canned artichokes. Not remotely the same. Instead of fresh figs, he used dates. Sort of the same. I made sure to write down what he did, because my dad’s version of Anne Burrell’s Pot Roast kicks butt.


If you’ve never seen Anne Burrell on Food Network, she is the fiesty blonde who used to cook with Mario Batali. I tend to watch her because she takes sophisticated flavors and makes them accessible to a universal audience. Take this recipe for Pot Roast for example (original found here). I don’t know about you, but I don’t tend to see pot roast recipes with figs, Jerusalem artichokes, and star anise. Trust her, and my dad, on this one. It all combines to create a very brilliant recipe. People will be talking about it long after you serve it. Love you Dad 🙂

Makes: 4 servings
Prep Time: 40 minutes     Cooking Time: 3 hours    Total Time: 3 hours, 40 minutes

1- 3 lb chuck roast
3 celery stalks, medium dice
2 onions, medium dice
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup tomato paste
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
3 bay leaves
2 star anise (found in the spice section)
1 bunch thyme, tied together
1 orange
4 cups water
1 medium butternut squash, medium dice
8 dates, pits removed
3/4 cup artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup chicken stock
salt and pepper

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 
  • Heat a Dutch oven pot to medium-high heat. Add olive oil to the pan and coat the bottom and sides.
  • Season all sides of the roast with salt and add it to the pan. Brown on all sides for 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from the pan and put onto a cookie sheet.
  • Lower the heat to medium in the pan. Add the celery, onion, and red pepper. Lightly season with salt and pepper and cook for 8-10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring so that everything combines. Add the vinegar and cook another 2 minutes.
  • Peel the orange with a vegetable peeler until you have two large pieces of rind. Add the orange rind, bay leaves, star anise, and bundle of thyme. Add the meat and 4 cups of water. Cover the pot and put into the oven. Cook for 1 hour.
  • Remove the pot from the oven and flip the meat over. If the liquids start to evaporate, add another 1/2 cup water. Cover with the lid and cook another 1 hour.
  • Remove the pot from the oven. Remove the meat and add the squash, artichokes, dates, and chicken stock. Return the meat to the pan and cook another 30 – 45 minutes, or until the juices are slightly reduced.
  • Remove from the oven and remove the meat onto a serving platter. Skim the fat off the surface with a spoon as necessary. Slice the meat on the bias into 1/2 inch slices. Serve with the vegetables and juices from the pan.

One Year Ago Today: Almond Oatmeal Pancakes with Blueberries 

Other Delicious One Pot Dishes: 

Arroz con Pollo
Arroz con Pollo
Seafood Gumbo
Seafood Gumbo
Cajun Jambalaya
Cajun Jambalaya

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