Relaxed Fine Dining at Friend’s House on 20Nov2013

slow-roast chuck tender (1hr) salad with fish sauce

slow-roast chuck tender (1hr) salad with fish sauce

a friend’s wife did a wonderful 6-course homegourmet dinner at their lovely home for a few of us last year, so my wife & i were really looking forward to the invitation to their home last evening on 20.11.2013. 🙂

their house sits on difficult terrain but is very well designed with good layout, quality finishes & furnishing. we had a relaxed pre-dinner wine chat (barolo red not that i knew what it was) at the sitting area before moving to dining, which had pool & water feature on 2 sides & LED downlights. 🙂

it was a very relaxed dinner, good food nicely paced, conversation, sharing & chill. 🙂

the first course was a delightful slow-roast chuck tender (1hr) with cabbage & tomatoes. the slight saltiness brought out the flavours of the tender beef (chuck is not an easy cut to make tender). i thought of “chimcharlo” but it was just fish sauce (which i use for my dry wok garlic prawns also with great results of a very “pang” dish). 🙂 the treatment to create a tender meat out of chuck is similar to my chuck pot roast.

cream of mushrooms with chicken dumplings

cream of mushrooms with chicken dumplings

the cream of mushroom was smooth with intended mushroom bits & not too creamy (health reasons?), and had the added treat of  tasty chicken dumplings.

slow-roast oven pork ribs (5hr at 100degC) with pasta

slow-roast oven pork ribs (5hr at 100degC) with pasta

next was a very tasty tomato sauce pasta dish with fork tender pork ribs (5hrs at 100degC). i tried number of times & my only decent dish was a pork rib arabiatta (spicy tomatoes) but had yet to do such tender ribs. will probably try again soon.

crackling belly pork with fresh apple compote

crackling belly pork with fresh apple compote

next was a crackling belly of pork with a lovely fresh apple compote, the slight sour sweet matched & enhanced the flavour of the tender belly pork. i had tried couple times gordon ramsay’s pressed belly of pork & loin of pork recipe. it was very difficult to get right (& i still didn’t & gave up trying, so i gravitated to my own miso belly pork recipe, and before that my japanese chashu recipe). my friend was talking about the touch & go situation with the crackling skin, this time a little less successful than what they had last. well, i am not fussy or specially enamoured with crackling skin (bonus if have) & that’s why i did not pursue the GR pressed pork belly & in fact my miso belly pork is done sans skin. 🙂

cake & strawberry mousse

cake & strawberry mousse

the cake with a sweet jam & the strawberry mousse was wonderful curtain closing to an excellent homegourmet dinner, the slight sour strawberry balancing the sweet cake. 🙂

these dinners are really fun for me, food, company, conversation, sharing of knowledge, views & perspectives. i will be doing one soon. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Chuck Pot Roast

chuck pot roast

chuck pot roast

had a piece of chuck tender in the freezer for couple months. about 600g+ and cost S$8+ for giant.

i had a few attempts at slow roast previously which were not that great. revisited some internet recipes and found a few crockpot recipes including this one=melt in your mouth chuck roast & decided to try it.

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chuck pot roast

chuck pot roast

as chuck could be quite tough despite slow-cooking & i decided not to use bicarbonate tenderiser this time, i tried red wine vinegar + dijorn mustard instead. not exactly sure if it worked much, but anyway i only did for about 3hrs. will try overnight or 24hrs next time.

i added 1 tablespoon wine vinegar & 1 tablespoon dijorn mustard to the 600g+ chuck tender (after cleaning & removing some fat & surface connective tissues) & marinated in a ziplog bag, pressing out the air before sealing.

before cooking, i brought to room temperature, seasoned with sea salt & coarse black pepper & then charred on all sides over 2 tablespoon butter in a non-stick frypan over high heat. this produced the brown ring & maillard reaction which made the roast flavourful. i then placed the chuck roast in a crockpot.

to make the vegetable ratatouille sauce, i fryed 2 chopped shallots, 3 cloves minced garlic in 2 tablespoon olive oil in the frypan over medium heat, & added 1 yellow onion diced, 1 large carrot diced,1 large potato diced, 1 stalk of leek diced (didn’t have tomatoes) & added the sauce mix & cooked for 10mins on medium low heat, adding water where required.

i then emptied the content into the crockpot. it should cover fully the chuck roast. i stuck in a meat thermometer set to 145degF (for medium rare) to the middle, thickest part of the roast & covered & turned crockpot to low. for the 600g+ roast, it took only 1hr 15mins before the meat thermometer alarm alerted.

now i understood why the crockpot recipe. like slow oven roast, it is often necessary to keep the meat moist to retain the juices and avoid drying out. so for my miso belly pork, i had it covered by miso marinade while slow-cooking at 90degC in the oven before broiling to create the seared surface. here i browned the meat first then placed the roast in a bath of vegetable ratatouille for an excellent tasty sauce, and that helped produce a tender, moist chuck roast.

my daughter & i carved & ate about 1/2 the roast with ratatouille sauce the first evening &. over 2 days, i carved & ate the other 1/2 with my daughter w/o the sauce, just adding some sea salt on both sides. even eating for the 3rd time after 2 days in a tin foil in the fridge, the meat was moist, tender & tasty. it would certainly do well also as a roast beef salad or roast beef sandwich. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Ingredients:

  • 600g+ chuck tender
  • 2 shallots chopped
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 1 large carrot diced
  • 1 large potato diced
  • 1 stalk celery or leek sliced
  • 1 large tomato cut to 8 slices

Sauce Mix

  • 1 tbsp worchester sauce
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp corn flour

Directions:

  1. prepare & tenderise meat – cleaning & remove fat & surface connective tissues. add 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar & 1 tablespoon dijorn mustard to chuck tender  & marinated in a ziplog bag, pressing out the air before sealing.
  2. cook vegetable ratatouille sauce – fry 2 chopped shallots, 3 cloves minced garlic in 2 tablespoon olive oil in the frypan over medium heat. add 1 yellow onion diced, 1 large carrot diced,1 large potato diced, 1 stalk of leek diced. add the sauce mix & cook for 10mins on medium low heat, adding water where required. set aside.
  3. cook the pot roast –  bring meat to room temperature, season with sea salt & coarse black pepper, charred on all sides over 2 tablespoon butter in a non-stick frypan over high heat. this produces the brown ring & maillard reaction which makes the roast flavourful. place the chuck roast in a crockpot.  empty the frypan content (vegetable ratatouille sauce) into the crockpot, and cover the chuck roast fully. stick a meat thermometer set to 145degF (for medium rare) to the middle, thickest part of the roast, cover & turn crockpot to low. for the 600g+ roast, it should take only 1hr 15mins before the meat thermometer alarm.