On the first day of winter, it's cold outside and a pot roast Italian style will make many people happy.
As a plus, the cook will stay warm while preparing it.
Beef in Barolo
Hearty Barolo is the wine of choice for this pot roast in Piedmont, in northern
Italy, but any good dry red wine can be substituted. The sauce is enhanced with vegetables and a hint of ground cloves. Serve with potato gnocchi or Creamy Polenta with Gorgonzola and Mascarpone (page 81).
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 3-pound boneless beef chuck or bottom round roast
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 ounces pancetta (see page 13), chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 cup dry red wine, such as Barolo
2 cups peeled, seeded, and chopped fresh or canned tomatoes
1 cup Meat Broth (page 47) or canned beef broth
2 medium carrots, sliced
1 medium celery rib, sliced
1 bay leaf
Pinch of ground cloves
Combine the flour with salt and pepper to taste. Spread the mixture on a piece of wax paper and roll the meat in the flour.
In a large, heavy skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the beef and brown it on all sides, about 15 minutes. Place the meat in a large slow cooker. Add the pancetta and onion to the skillet. Reduce the heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender. Stir in the garlic. Add the wine and bring it to a simmer, scraping the bottom of the pan.
Pour the mixture over the beef. Add the tomatoes and broth. Scatter the carrots, celery, bay leaf, and ground cloves around the meat. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours, or until the meat is tender when pierced with a fork.
Transfer the meat to a platter. Remove the bay leaf from the sauce. Slice the meat and spoon on the sauce.
( * From The Italian Slow Cooker, © 2010 by Michele Scicolone, used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and the photo as © 2010 by Alan Richardson, used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)