7.21.2008

sunday dinner: roast, carrots, gravy

the roast. the key piece of sunday dinner. this is how you make it people. pay attention. i know everybody knows how to make a roast. but there is a secret to this one that most people don't know. so i meant it, pay attention.

let's get started. you'll need a roast, some oil, salt & pepper, and Lipton Onion Soup Mix. and some carrots, if you want. we like rumps in our family. ahem, i mean rump roasts. i meant rump roasts. but i suppose we like rumps too. i know i do. when choosing a roast, i try to find a small-ish roast with few to no strips of fat going through the middle. the fat in the middle is gross and makes the roast tough, in my opinion. go for the least amount of fat people. trust me.
pour some oil in a roasting pan. not too much. i have no idea how much. how much do you think this is? how about....1/4 of a cup? no. less than that.
put your roast in. you want to brown it. brown it good. wait, i think it's supposed to be "brown it well." the browner you brown it, the better your gravy will taste. and you want yummy gravy.
put the heat on medium-high and cover. leave it. i said leave it! don't touch it for a few minutes. four or five at least.
for some entertainment while you're waiting, help your kid make a huge mess. (after he did this he goes, "i did it!" he's cute.)
see that? that's brown. that's exactly what you want, and i mean it. now turn it, and brown it on all the rest of the sides.
then watch your kid make an even bigger mess.
the first browned part was better. i left this for a while but it was so uneven it didn't brown as well as the bottom.
now add some salt. this is waaay too much but i was trying to take a picture at the same time and, well, this is what happened. i scraped that off after i took the picture.
and some pepper. lots of pepper is good. it makes the gravy delish. and the roast, too. but i care more about the gravy, obviously. i've mentioned it about 40 times so far and we haven't even finished browning the roast yet. i love to have this gravy on baked potatoes. it's great on mashed, too, but i really love it on baked. so brown it well, or your potatoes won't be as good. and i'm serious about my potatoes, just ask dave.
now i add about 2 cups of water. for the gravy. yes, gravy again. get used to it. i'm going to be talking about it a lot.
and this is the secret, people. beefy onion. regular onion is okay, but beefy onion? that's the ticket. you want this one.
recipe secrets is right. i use this in my meatloaf and i want it in everything else meat-ish.
pour it on your roast--try and get it all on the meat. you don't want to lose any of this deliciousness to the water.
see? perfect. yum.
i like to add some carrots to the water. mom never did this, but we looove cooked carrots at our house, and cooked in the browned gravy water with the lipton beefy onion? to die for. literally. it's probably going to kill me one day. i don't care. it's that good.
pretty!
now stick it in the oven. i cooked mine at 250* for 6 hours. that was a bit too long. it wasn't burned but it was a little dry. i think it's probably better to cook it at 275* for 3-4 hours (do it right before church, then as soon as you get home dinner is just about ready--perfect for fast sundays and late church times!) or 250* for 4-5 hours.
mmmboy. check out those carrots. and the beefy onion on top. it doesn't get better than this, i'm telling you. it just doesn't.
now grab some forks and get the roast out of the pan, onto a plate. mine was so tender it almost fell apart as i transferred it, so be careful!
ahhh....i wish i could somehow transfer the smell to your house. there is nothing quite like the smell of this roast on a sunday after you get home from church. delightful. i want to lick that beefy onion right off that rump.

now you need a knife. i like this cutting set that my brother james and his wife holly gave dave and i a few months after we were married (i cannot remember why they gave us one of these, except that every time we had them over for dinner i'd ask them to bring theirs...i guess they got sick of sharing?!). i love this set. it comes in a handy boxy with different blades. it's very fun. electric knives in general are sort of fun. but this roast was so tender i probaby could have cut it with a spoon and it wouldn't have mattered.
cut the fat off the bottom (unless you like fatty bottoms, that is)
and slice it thinly. or thickly. whatever. i like it thin, like me. heh heh heh. good one. now cover and set aside while you get everything else ready.

use a strainer to scoop out your carrots,

and look! some of the beefy onion got on the carrots...this could not be better. i'm so excited about these carrots.
and now for the gravy. my mom makes the most delicious gravy known to man. i have never quite perfected it, but i'm working on it. after you've strained the carrots out, put your roasting pan on the stove and bring the water to a boil. if you're having lots of people over, add some more water to the pan. if it's just you, leave it. the more concentrated the juice, the better the gravy.
get one of these. they're the best whisks in the world.
then make your thickening. i dont' know how to explain this...i add 3 of these spoonfuls to a tupperware. i had a tupperware salad dressing shaker that i used to use but dave lost it, so now i just use a small tupperware bowl. add a little bit more water than flour--you'll have to eyeball it, or else measure out your flour first, then add a bit more water--and then put the lid on and shake.you'll want something water tight to shake it in. shake it really well, make sure the flour and water mix evenly. if it's lumpy, you might want to try again so you don't get lumpy gravy. it should look like this.
when your water is boiling, add the thickening
and whisk together.
once it's thick and mixed well, turn off the stove and let the gravy boil for a minute.
give it one more stir, then put it in a serving bowl with a ladle, and you're ready to eat.
check it out:

sunday dinner.
a real masterpiece.

mom's (or grandma larson's or mine) sunday dinner


1 rump roast
1 packet lipton onion soup mix
2 cups water
1 package of baby carrots

brown the roast well. add salt, pepper, and soup mix. pour in 2 cups of water and add carrots. cover and cook at 250* for 4-5 hours or 275* for 3-4 hours. serve with baked or mashed potatoes (i looove baked potatoes with this gravy), cooked carrots (or green beans), and hot rolls. and don't forget the jell-o!!

i also like to use rhodes rolls, because they're easy and pretty good, and homemade rolls just take a lot of time. but if you're brave, go for the gusto man. make 'em from scratch like mom. i'm not gonna, but you can feel free. and i like to serve them with homemade strawberry jam. yum-o.

5 comments:

J Fo said...

Don't judge me, but I never knew that you could do a roast without a crock-pot! I was kind of drooling as I read through the steps ffor this one. This is totally a tradition that I could get in on!

lynette said...

I like the part where you said you wanted to lick the onion off the rump--kinky!

This looks divine! I'll have to try it as soon as I can get my hands on some of that beefy onion stuff.

Emilie Ahern said...

Wanna make your roast even more beefy-rific?!! Instead of your water in the pot, add beef broth. It makes your gravy even better too! Yum!

I'm totally going to make this next Sunday and get your "beefy lipton" instead of the normal one.

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