Monday, March 18, 2013

Swiss Steak Reconsidered

My husband told me didn't like Swiss Steak. I explained that it was because he'd never had my Swiss Steak. Me, I love the stuff. Well, I love it when it's made right.  If you don't like it, it could be because you've had the kind that's basically a tough hamburger patty with some tomato soup on top. This is not that recipe.

This is beef in a rich, tomatoey, garlicky sauce. This beef practically melts in your mouth. You could ask my husband, but his mouth his is full of Swiss steak.

The ingredients are basic:

A chuck roast, half a large onion, thyme, tomato paste, a can of tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes, three gloves of garlic, two tablespoons of flour, salt, pepper and chicken broth. I forgot to take a picture of the chicken broth. I always forget to take a picture of something. To start, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Start with a  3 to 4 pound chuck roast or blade roast. Slice it up into equal portions about two inches thick.

Generously salt and pepper. Heat about a tablespoon of oil in a Dutch oven. I use a large shallow pot myself to fit all of the meat in at once.  If you use a smaller pot, you'll probably need to brown the meat in batches. Let the pot get hot and add the meat.

 Get the meat brown on both sides and remove to a plate.

 Add maybe a teaspoon more of oil to the hot pan with all the meat drippings and put in a small diced onion or half a large one.

 Let them cook until softened and just starting to brown. Then measure out 2 tablespoons of tomato paste (I love the stuff in the tube), 1/2 tsp of dried thyme and 3 cloves of minced garlic.

 Add to the tomatoes and stir for about thirty seconds.

Then add 2 tablespoons of flour and stir for another 30 to 40 seconds.

 Now add a 14 ounce can of diced tomatoes. I love the fire-roasted kind.

Then pour in a cup and a half of chicken broth.

Stir, scraping up all of the delicious brown bits from the pan.

Add the beef back to the pot.

Cover and put in the 300 degree oven for 2 1/2 to 3 hours. You don't have to do anything but allow it to cook.  I didn't forget to put in the sun-dried tomatoes. They go in later. After 2 1/2 to 3 hours take out of the oven and remove the meat to plate and cover with foil.

If there's quite a bit of fat on top, skim as much of it off as you can. Now chop up a tablespoon of sun dried tomatoes. That is an out-of-focus picture of chopped sun dried tomatoes.

Add to the pot along with salt and pepper.

 Cook for a few more minutes.  Place the meat on a plate and spoon over the rich tomato gravy.

This is excellent with mashed potatoes. Enjoy!

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