Pot Roast with Sherry Shallot Sauce
- 2 tsp fennel seeds
- 2 tsp black peppercorns
- 3 Tbsp shiitake mushroom powder*
- 4 tsp salt
- 1 (4 lb) chuck roast tied
- Olive oil for drizzling
- 10 large shallots peeled and halved
- 8 cloves of garlic peeled and smashed
- 1 cup dry sherry
- 2 cups low sodium beef broth plus more if needed
- 5 sprigs fresh thyme tied with twine if you have it
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 Tbsp all purpose flour
- 2 Tbsp very soft unsalted butter
- 1 tsp sherry vinegar more to taste
- Fresh dill
- Fresh parsley leaves
- Lemon juice
- Fresh horseradish root peeled
- The night before you want to cook the roast, add black pepper and fennel seeds to a mortar and pestle or spice grinder. Crush into a coarse powder. Mix with mushroom powder and salt.
- Season the roast all over with all of the spice mix. Transfer to a wire rack lined sheet tray and let sit in your fridge uncovered overnight.
- The next day when you are ready to cook, preheat the oven to 325ºF.
- Coat the bottom of a large dutch oven with oil and heat over medium heat until hot. Add in roast, and sear on all sides until deep golden, about 5-7 minutes per side. Adjust heat as needed to make sure the bits at the bottom of the pot aren’t burning.
- Remove meat from the pot. Add in shallots, cut side down, and char, about 2-3 minutes. Add in garlic and cook 1 minute longer.
- Deglaze with sherry and scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pot. You aren’t looking to reduce the alcohol here.
- Add in beef broth, thyme, and bay leaves. Bring to a simmer and add the roast back into the pot. Nestle it in between the shallots and garlic. The liquid should come up about halfway up the side of the meat. Add more beef broth if needed to do so.
- Cover and bake for 3-4 hours until fork tender.
- Transfer meat from the pot to a platter and remove twine. Discard thyme and bay leaves.
- Blend everything in the pot into a nice smooth sauce. Turn the heat on low.
- Mix the butter and flour until smooth. Add the mixture (called a beurre manié) into the sauce and whisk until combined. Bring to a gentle boil and cook while whisking, until thickened slightly.
- Stir in vinegar and season to taste with black pepper and salt if needed.
- Toss a big handful of both dill and parsley leaves with a touch of lemon juice.
- Using two forks, break up the pot roast into large chunks. Top with some of the sauce and the herb salad.
- Finely grate a bunch of fresh horseradish over the entire roast.
- Serve with the remaining sauce on the side.
*To make shiitake mushroom powder: Take about ½ ounce of dried shiitakes and blend them until powdery in a blender. You can also use a food processor, but it won’t get as fine, so just sift it through a fine mesh sieve.
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