Thursday, June 18, 2009

Roast with Whipped Potatoes and Gravy

If I had to choose one meal to live off of I would probably choose this one. I love a Sunday dinner with roast and potatoes and so does my husband. My mother makes excellent gravy and I've always tried to make it as good as her and I'll admit sometimes my gravy would work out and other times it wouldn't. So after making it a ton of times and watching my mother over and over I've think I've finally mastered it and know what I was doing wrong. Really it's very easy to make if you follow a few simple rules. I like gravy that has a lot of flavor and sometimes I would make it and it didn't have much and I learned that my problem was cooking the roast in the crock pot. Now don't get me wrong I like a tender roast from the crock pot but the drippings from it are too watery and don't make good gravy. So if you want good gravy cook the roast in a roasting pan in the oven with plenty of water following my directions below. When I make a crock pot roast I throw potatoes and carrots in during the last hour of cooking and the juices flavor the potatoes so I don't need gravy. Hopefully what I've learned will help you make great gravy that family and friends will love.

pot roast (I like rump roasts)
*the bigger the roast the more gravy you'll get
onion soup mix packet (one for small-medium roast, two for large one)
onion sliced into strips
around 5 lbs potatoes peeled cut into chunks
margarine (I think margarine flavors the potatoes better)
salt and pepper

To make a tender roast in the oven cook it on lower heat 250-275 degrees for a long time 6 hrs. Put the roast in the roasting pan covering roast about 3/4ths of the way with water. Sprinkle roast with salt and pepper generously and onion soup mix. Top with onion slices. Cover and cook checking occasionally for water and you can turn the roast half way through. When roast is finished remove from pan and cover with foil. Spoon out any large pieces of fat, meat, and onion. Before making gravy boil the potatoes in water until tender then drain (reserve some potato water for the gravy) and cover. To make gravy mix together a few tablespoons of flour with water (I like to shake it up in a mason jar) stir the lumps out and it should be a thick creamy consistency. You'll want to make at least a cup of the flour thickener. If you use cornstarch as a thickener remember that cornstarch cannot be added to a boiling liquid or it will go lumpy. You have to mix the cornstarch with warm water and then add it in. On the stove bring the roast drippings to a slight boil. Add potato water if more water is needed (not too much or it will lose flavor) and gradually whisk in flour thickener as it boils. Add a little flour thickener and then wait to see it thicken then add more if needed until your gravy reaches the thickness you desire. At the same time add in salt and pepper to season. A few tips: If gravy tastes like flour let it boil longer; don't add too much water; you can add beef broth or beef bouillon to flavor it more. To make delicious creamy potatoes whip potatoes with a hand mixer adding in a little milk or cream to make it smooth. I whip in a whole stick of margarine. Add salt and pepper to taste. I then fold in little bits of margarine throughout that then melt. Serve roast shredded or sliced against the grain, potatoes to the side with gravy on top. Enjoy!


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