As I’m entering my third trimester of pregnancy I’ve had a burst of creativity in the kitchen! I have been cooking, quite a bit actually, since my last recipe post but with my camera nowhere in sight and my motivation nonexistent. Turns out working all day and then trying to tire out a puppy takes up most of the evening. I have a bone to pick with that internet article that claimed yorki-poo puppies take care of their own activity needs…we need to talk! But she is the cutest love muffin around and the best excuse to get outside to take a walk.
I actually cannot take credit for the majority of this recipe; it was mostly my husband’s idea. I love cooking with him; throughout the past 8 years there are so many great dishes that resulted from our combined efforts. I’ve been making a conscious effort to savor these last couple months of just the two of us; life is about to drastically change with the arrival of our little guy and, although I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for us, I have a feeling it won’t revolve around leisurely cooking dinner together while drinking wine. Just a guess, ha! After brainstorming several ideas of what to cook together we landed on a combination of a balsamic beef recipe that we’ve made for family several times but decided to turn it into more of a “one pot meal” by adding root vegetables from the Farmer’s Market. I’m admittedly terrible at following recipes so I tend to take inspiration from other great food bloggers, chefs, and magazine articles then expand on them based on what we like. I always hope the readers of this blog do the same!
The balsamic beef recipe came from Pinterest (who isn’t obsessed at this point, right??) from the Add a Pinch blog. Crock pot recipes are the perfect transition from summer food to fall food, and also happen to be perfect for a pregnant lady who is pooped after her evening dog walk. The sauce of this balsamic beef is so easy to throw together and is super flavorful after simmering the beef to tender perfection. Check out the original recipe here; my modified pot roast version with the veggies is posted below.
- 2 lb. chuck roast (we prefer grass-fed, if you can find it)
- 1 c. beef broth
- 1/2 c. balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 tbsp. honey
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- pinch red pepper flakes (increase or decrease based on your spice tolerance)
- 1 rutabaga, peeled and chopped into large dice
- 4 large carrots, peeled and chopped into large dice
- 1 lb. fingerling potatoes
- 1 large sprig fresh rosemary
- 10 sprigs fresh thyme
- salt/pepper, to taste
Begin by mixing up the sauce: combine beef broth, Worcestershire, soy sauce, honey, garlic, and red pepper flakes into a measuring cup and whisk to combine.
Whisk until the honey is well incorporated into the other ingredients.
Place the beef roast in the bottom of a slow cooker (I used my medium crock pot; 4-5 quart size). I rarely identify my crock pots by their actual quart size; I tenderly refer to them as the small, medium, and big one. As in “hey honey, will you grab the medium crock pot for me please?”. Use your judgment.
Peel and chop the veggies then sprinkle them evenly over the beef; it will look like a lot of veggies at this point but they will cook down a bit as they become tender.
Pour the sauce over the meat and veggie mixture, adding a little more beef broth as needed. I did add a splash or two more of broth to help the veggies near the top cook more evenly. Nestle the sprigs of fresh rosemary and thyme on top of the veggies and cover with the lid. I am constantly looking for opportunities to use up the last of the herbs from my veggie garden before the frost completely takes over; please hold out until Thanksgiving little herbs! Cook on HIGH for 4-5 hours or LOW for 6-8 hours until the veggies are fork tender and the meat is falling apart tender.
Remove the meat and shred with a fork; I like to keep it in larger pieces so it has a heartier feel. Return the meat to the crock pot to soak up the sauce.
Serve a heaping pile of meat and veggies and enjoy sitting down to this comforting fall meal. FYI; leftovers are great too!