Evan’s Pot Roast

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This is Evan’s version of Mark Bittman’s Pot Roast with Cranberries without the Cranberries.  She made it for her restaurant’s Hanukkah celebration.  Recipe after the jump…

Evan’s Pot Roast

2 lb boneless chuck in one or two big pieces
Enough Sugar for dredging
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup Sherry Vinegar
1 juicy orange
2 cups “Mediterranean” Apricots or Pitted Dates, or Pitted Prunes
2 onions, peeled and sliced (optional)
2 garlic cloves
1 cup tomato sauce (optional)

Preheat oven to 375°.

Heat heavy ovenproof cassetole over high heat. Place sugar on plate. Dredge meat in sugar on all sides. When oil is hot add meat to pan. Allow the meat to become deeply caramelized to a dark brown, turning it as necessary with tongs to allow browning everywhere. When the meat is browned add the vinegar to the pan and deglaze, scraping underneath the meat to get at the dark bits. Remove from heat.

Squeeze the juice from the orange onto the meat and throw in the squeezed halves for flavor. Add the garlic cloves, salt and pepper to taste and the dried fruit. If you want a more traditional eastern European flavor add the optional onions and tomato sauce. Cover pot, place in 375° oven and cook meat for a minimum of 2 hours or until fork tender.