A trip to the Foodie Market Place in Tiong Bahru, Singapore, will leave you with all kinds of food inspirations – the shelves are stocked with all types of produce (frozen meats, canned vegetables, cheeses, ready to eat desserts, seasonings/marinades, oils) all at prices lower than conventional supermarkets. They specialise in air flown chilled beef and lamb that you can get by the slice or in prepackaged portions, and I have to thank my friend Ek who eats beef on a regular basis for introducing me to this market with affordable, quality meats.
Chuck vs Shank – I have been looking for cheaper cuts of meat to make my grocery bills less crazy of late – choice of cut after a quick discussion with the seller was boneless chuck (I could have gone with the shank cut that was also available however, it has more sinew which means more collagen and also fats; and I would need to cook it for a much longer time – 3 hrs at least).
Dutch ovens and pot roasts – I bought about 1 kg of chuck boneless meat and cut it up (as pictured) which cost about S$15 and decided on making a pot roast using a Dutch oven after a quick look at what was in the fridge and pantry. There are many upsides to doing a pot roast using a Dutch oven (it’s a fancy name for an investment kitchen pot quite expensive and heavy, made of cast iron with an enamel coating on the inside).
A Dutch oven allows you to cook on the stove top browning all your ingredients before transferring the whole pot directly to the oven. It gives everything you cook in it even flavour and texture. One or two dutch ovens will last you many years so it is a must have for anyone serious about roasts, stews or soups in my opinion!
Why pot roasts make great freezer meals full of veges – My other agenda was getting as many types of low carb vegetables (we’ve got radish, carrots, celery and tomatoes, and a handful of pulses/chick peas for extra protein) into the pot to get my hubby who is big on any kind of meat to eat more vegetables! Plus, the leftovers can be frozen and stored for other meals for my children to make macaroni soups or even russian borsch.
Put your kids to sleep as the Dutch oven cooks your pot roast – The version I’m making is a quick cooking one, 10 mins on the stove top and another 60 mins in the oven on 180C. I like cooking it just before I put my children to bed – the putting to bed takes about an hour so I brown all my ingredients, add all my vegetables and then leave it in the oven for a whole hour and when I’ve put both my children to sleep my roast is ready!
Step one: browning the beef make sure you leave it in pot once the oil is hot, turn to sear the other side for a few minutes before turning.
Step two: turn the beef with tongs or spatula to even out the browning. Splash in your chosen alcohol, cook for a few minutes let it evaporate and then remove the beef from the pot and set aside.
Step three: add a little more olive oil and cook the minced onions and shallots till milky.
Add minced garlic cook till fragrant.
Step four: Add seared beef chuck cubes back to the pot and one cup of water or beef stock to the cooked onions and garlic and throw in the star anise.
Step five: layer the vegetables and all the other ingredients you wish to include.
Step six: Add the other cup of water/beef stock and tamari, tomato paste, vinegar and worcestershire sauce. (Omit the last seasoning if you are gluten sensitive).
Preheat your oven to 180C on the fan setting, carefully place your dutch oven into the cavity of your oven on the second shelf from the bottom. Cook for 1 hour.
That’s it folks! – This is what your pot roast will look like after one hour of cooking. The meat becomes tender and flavourful and the vegetables aren’t overdone. The sauce is full of intense meaty, robust flavours, soak it up with some crusty bread! (Mmm… so good… eating it with gluten free bread in my case is a real treat!) This is the perfect cosy dinner you can even have in bed watching TV! My kind of utter bliss after a long day!
Where to buy…
Meat: Foodie Market Place
Foodie Market Place, 225 Outram Rd. S(169038)
Area: Tiong Bahru.
Featured Dutch ovens: Le Creuset I’ve had this one for about 6 years – this is not a sponsored post btw opinions are my own…
Tag us at #taystesg if you make this!
All flavour low-carb pot roast
Serves 6 to 8 persons
Prep: 10 mins
Stove top: 10 mins
In the oven: 1 hour
Total time: Approx: 1.5 hours
Equipment needed: Dutch oven
1kg of boneless beef chuck cut into cubes (peppered and salted, then rolled in potato starch/rice flour/corn starch)
6 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons any available alcohol – cognac/red wine/sake
4 shallots minced
2 big brown onions minced
4 cloves garlic minced
1/3 of a Japanese radish – peeled and cut into wedges
1.5 carrot peeled and cut into wedges
5 stalks celery cut into 3 cm pieces
1 punnet mixed yellow and red cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons tamari (if no tamari add more salt towards the end of the cook)
2 cups of water or unsalted beef stock
2 tablespoons brown rice/ apple cider vinegar (optional this tenderises the meat and vegetables a little and makes the stew slightly tart)
2 to 3 pieces star anise (substitute with oregano or other dried herbs if no star anise is available)
4 pieces bay leaves
1/4 cup tomato paste
A dash of worcesterhire sauce (omit if avoiding gluten)
Salt and pepper to taste
Garnish – basil
Cut boneless chuck into cubes, pepper and salt. Coat with potato starch/rice flour/corn starch if going gluten free. If not plain flour will be fine for those who can tolerate wheat.
Prep minced shallots, onions and garlic – easier method is to use a food processor to mince each ingredient. Cut all vegetables to desired size and length. If including sausages cut to bite size.
In your dutch oven or pot, heat olive oil till hot and brown beef chuck cubes in olive oil, sear on one side and then turn to brown the other side. Splash in your alcohol, to treat the beef after the sear. Let most of the alcohol evaporate and then remove beef cubes from heat. Cook minced onions; shallots till milky and then add garlic and cook till fragrant.
Add one cup of water/beef stock to the onions and return the beef chuck cubes to the pot. Toss in the star anise and add all the vegetables, chick peas, sausages.
Looking at the stock portion of the ingredients list – add in your other cup of water/beef stock, vinegar, tomato paste, bay leaves and worcestershire sauce (omit the last seasoning ingredient if you are very sensitive to gluten). Stir everything in pot together and mix well.
Pre heat oven to 180C, once oven reaches internal temperature of 180C place in dutch oven on the second shelf from the bottom with the cover over the pot.
Cook for 1 hour and then remove from oven.
Serve with toasted crusty gluten free bread and garnish with basil!
These are some of the other low carb vegetables that will work nicely with this pot roast: cabbages, mushrooms, cauliflower, peppers, green beans.
I picked these because of the low glycemic index each of these vegetables have.
This roast can also be made with pork, chicken, lamb. Make it vegan by taking out the meat.
If cooking this recipe in a regular pot, over the stove instead of in an oven, follow the same time frame of one hour. However, be careful of your ingredients burning at the bottom of the pot do remember to stir occasionally.