Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Slow Cooked Maple Dijon Pot Roast + 30 Days of Dinner

As I mentioned yesterday, I'm only a few days into a winter Whole30 and I actually couldn't be more ecstatic to be off all the holiday junk (read: ready to lose my mind if you try to take my cashews). We had such fun fall and holiday seasons full of entertaining and celebrating, but we are ready to clean. it. up.

The majority of these 30 Days of Dinner are me just trying to hold it together in between bouts of celebration. But if you are looking to say bye bye to some of the bad stuff (even though it tastes sooooo good), things should be pretty clean around these parts for the near future. This Slow Cooked Maple Dijon Pot Roast is definitely a family favorite and I'm all about the slow cooker these days. So little hands-on cooking time and cleanup for such deliciousness. Fire it up!

Slow Cooked Maple Dijon Pot Roast
(slightly adapted from The Kitchn)

-  2 1/2 to 3 lbs beef chuck roast
- 4 to 5 slices bacon, diced
- 3 large onions, peeled and sliced into half moons
- 1 1/2 to 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp maple syrup 
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp kosher salt 
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- fresh thyme, for garnish 

1. Pat the beef dry with paper towels and season generously with salt and pepper. 

2. Set a large Dutch oven or heavy skillet over medium-high to high heat. Add the bacon and cook until some fat starts rendering and it begins to turn golden. Push the bacon to the sides and add the beef. Sear both sides until golden brown, about 5 - 8 minutes per side, and transfer all the meat to the bowl of the slow cooker.  

3. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat. Reduce heat to medium. Add the onions and cook until starting to soften, about 5 minutes. Pour in a few tablespoons of chicken stock and bring to a boil, scraping up any of the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Pour the onions and pan juices into the bowl of the slow cooker. 

4. In a separate bowl, whisk the remaining chicken stock, Dijon, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, paprika, salt, and pepper until combined. Pour the liquid mixture over the roast. Close the lid and cook on LOW heat until the meat falls apart and is meltingly tender, about 8 hours. 

5. Transfer the roast to a serving bowl or platter and cover with foil. Pour the cooking liquids into a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook until the gravy is reduced to desired thickness. Cut the roast into chunks and pour hot gravy over the top.  

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30 Days of Dinner

Day 1(M) -- Apple Cranberry Turkey Meatballs; roasted carrots; egg noodles for the kiddos.
Day 2 (T) -- dinner out.
Day 3 (W) -- Lemon Chicken with Red Onion (sans sugar); Cheesy Roasted Potatoes with Bacon (the kids lost their minds over these potatoes).
Day 4 (Th) -- quick burgers; Roasted Cauliflower with Pomegranate Seeds, Mint, and Toasted Almonds
Day 5 (F) -- I had friends over for cocktails, so I didn't really eat dinner (kids had leftovers!) But I made some really tasty cocktail snacks, including Homemade Flatbreads with Beet Pesto, Blue Cheese + Pine Nuts and Sautéed Onion + Yogurt Dip (like fancy onion dip --- deeelish!!).
Day 6 (Sat) -- dinner out.
Day 7 (Sun) -- Spiced Brisket with Shallots + Tangerines (delicious); roasted potatoes; green beans.

Day 8 (M) -- leftovers and brinner.
Day 9 (T) -- Easy One-Skillet Mediterranean Chicken -- this was tasty and the kids loved it.
Day 10 (W) -- leftovers with addition of roasted cauliflower and carrots.
Day 11 (Th) -- Braised Meatballs + Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes (I upped this recipe and it was outrageously good, but took forever to make. Definitely not a weeknight recipe!); carrots.
Day 12 (F) -- Italian Baked Eggs; Roasted Kale (I ran out of time to make this the night before, but it was yummy!)
Day 13 (Sat) -- dinner party at our house -- I phoned it in and we ordered catering from Lebanese Taverna. I couldn't have been happier about that.
Day 14 (Sun) -- One Pot Cheesy Taco Skillet -- I put the kids' mixture in tortillas and it was the perfect way to sneak extra veggies in.

Day 15 (M) -- Zucca Spaghetti Pesto + Shrimp
Day 16 (T) -- Salsa Verde Honey Lime Chicken Tacos -- as I mentioned in last Friday's Five, this is a new family favorite!! I'll need to figure out a dairy-free option for Whole30 though!
Day 17 (W) -- Apple Cranberry Turkey Meatballs; egg noodles; green beans.
Day 18 (Th) -- Christmas Eve Dinner! My FIL made a delicious standing rib roast with sauce and I made the rest, including a deeelish Spinach + Artichoke dip for an appetizer, Honey Glazed Brussels Sprouts and BeetsPotato-Fennel Gratin, and Popovers (in my new popover pan!).
Day 19 (F) -- it's a family tradition to eat Chinese food out for Christmas dinner!
Day 20 (Sat) -- leftovers! (so, so many leftovers)
Day 21(Sun) -- we headed to New Jersey for the week, so I didn't cook much. Sunday eve my FIL made meatloaf, mashed potatoes and veg. Yesssss.

Day 22 (M) -- my FIL made barbecue chicken, quinoa, and a yummy salad.
Day 23 (T) -- dinner out.
Day 24 (W) -- dinner out.
Day 25 (Th) -- a grilled steak dinner for NYE!
Day 26 (F) -- dinner out.
Day 27 (Sat) -- I started my winter Whole30 this Saturday so we had Roasted Sausages + Grapes (I subbed chicken stock for the wine and everyone loved!); Honey Roasted Butternut Squash with Cranberries and Feta (leave off feta if Whole30).
Day 28 (Sun) -- Slow Cooked Maple Dijon Pot Roast; twice baked potatoes; leftover veggies.

Day 29 (M) -- Almond-Crusted Cod with Green Olive Salsa (minus the lentils!); asparagus
Day 30 (T) -- dinner out -- steak and brussels sprouts salad, yo. 


Laura said...

Looks delicious!! This is my current favorite slow cooker meal but I use red wine instead of beer (half of us are gluten free) and double or triple the carrots as my peeps are big fans.

Jill Wiener said...

I get so many dinner ideas from your list, so thanks! We seem to enjoy the same flavor profiles so it makes my recipe searching that much easier!