Slow cook Sundays is our current collaboration for the month of February with our friends at BFR Meats. You can find BFR’s meats including steaks, ground beef, sausages, ribs. pork, jerky. Check them out online and on High Country Food Hub.
Here’s my spin on Mississippi Pot Roast, featuring one of my favorite ingredients, Red Weapons. It’s a fun twist on an already twisted viral recipe.
Unless you’ve been under a rock the last few years, Mississippi Pot Roast is an insanely popular recipe all over the interwebs, and pinterest is full of a host of different versions. It’s quite delicious, but often laden with dried dressing or seasoning blends and soup mixes, which means the recipe can reach stratospheric sodium levels. On this collaboration with BFR Meats, I wanted to try a different version of MI Pot Roast, using their boneless chuck roast but with an Eastern NC spin, mainly featuring famed Chef Vivian Howard’s “Red Weapons,” which I keep on hand in my fridge as an aptly named flavor hero.
We love to serve our pot roast with mashed potatoes or pureed cauliflower but I thought with the slight spiciness and acidity of Red Weapons, that making creamed corn and then pureeing to a rustic texture it would be delicious. I was right and it’s quite rich, so not an every day combo for us. It was pretty too and a nice departure from potatoes.
About Red Weapons: From Chef Howard’s book, This Will Make It Taste Good, it’s a pickled tomato and jalapeño mixture that is filled with aromatics like ginger, garlic and scallions, mustard seeds and spices. You allow the mixture to boil then you jar it for a few days and watch the science happen as the veggies and brine settle to the bottom and the flavorful “oil cap” rises to the top. After 3 days of “pickling”, it’s ready to be used for as long as you have it. There’s some suggestion that it’ll last up to 3 months in the fridge simply jarred if you don’t use the canning method, but I have not died and it’s been at least four months. Need to make more now. This is by far my favorite recipe in her cookbook and I encourage you to support authors and buy this book as I will not be placing the Red Weapons recipe here, however during the promotion of the book, the recipe was shared online so you can easily find it. But buy the book! Make RW then come back to this recipe in 3 days, mkay?
Red Weapons Pot Roast
2-3 lb chuck roast
Ranch seasoning blend (I used a tsp each onion powder, garlic powder, dill weed, basil, thyme, parsley, salt). You can use a ranch packet if you prefer.)
Packet Au Jus Seasoning (optional) Note: I used BFR Meats au jus but you can use better than bouillon or anything that may further ratchet up the beefiness. Have fun with this part
1 1/2 cups Red Weapons Twin B (the veggies and brine)
3 TBS Red Weapons Twin A (the solidified oil)
1 cup (approx) beef broth or water if needed
Generously salt and pepper the chuck roast. Sear on both sides until browned. This step is optional but does add depth of flavor. It’s helpful if you can do this in your slow cooker providing it’s equipped but again, if you don’t want to mess up two pots, skip it.
Add the seasonings, Red Weapons veggies, brine and oil to the roast then add about 1/2 cup of broth, just enough to reach halfway up the roast. Keep the remaining if needed toward the end of cooking. Set the slow cooker for 8 hours on low. Give it a peek near the end and add a little broth if needed. See Pressure Cooker method below.
After the scheduled time, the meat should be very tender, juicy, and falling apart. She won’t be the cutest thing you’ve ever seen but she’s succulent and unbelievably good. Beefy, tangy, slightly spicy and soul warming. Serve the roast and its gravy on mashed potatoes, or if you’re feeling indulgent, pureed creamed corn. Make it keto or paleo by serving on pureed cauliflower.
This is the perfect recipe for the Instant Pot or pressure cooker as well. In fact, that’s usually the way I make this version of pot roast. Simply reduce the water or broth by half and cook on high pressure for 65 minutes, allowing for a natural pressure release. Shred the meat and serve as suggested above.