What goes around, really does come around. Pot roast went around almost every weekend when I was growing up in the 1950s. It was inexpensive and easy to cook, and working moms like mine had time on the weekends to do the long cooking a good pot roast requires. Today the chuck roast I used for this Tex-Mex pot roast remains an economical cut of beef. Instead of spending hours tending a pot in the oven, I spend ten minutes prepping ingredients that go into my slow cooker, which makes it easy to have pot roast on a workday or weekend. Traditional flavorings for pot roast often include tomato and onions, with Italian herbs and spices; this version starts with tomato and onions, too, and then goes Southwest with cumin, chili powder, and canned green chile peppers. (Don't be afraid of the chile peppers. They mellow with the long cooking time.) Serve this with rice or noodles, or shred the meat and fill a taco or burrito. I promise this will become a family favorite that goes around for years to come.
Slow cooker Tex-Mex pot roast
4 lb chuck roast
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp mild chili powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp fresh black pepper
1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
1 14-oz can Ro*Tel (or diced tomatoes with green chiles)
4-oz can diced green chiles (use half for a milder sauce)
Trim the roast to remove the largest pieces of fat. You'll end up with several big chunks of meat, a total of 3-1/2 pounds or so. Place the meat in a large mixing bowl.
In a small bowl, combine the cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper. Rub this mixture on all sides of the meat.
Heat a large, deep, nonstick frying pan. Over medium heat, brown the pieces of beef on all sides (in batches, if necessary).
Place the onion in the base of a 4-quart slow cooker. Top with the browned beef. Pour the can of Ro*Tel into the frying pan, and with a rubber spatula, scrape up the brown bits from the pan (using the liquid from the Ro*Tel to deglaze the pan). Pour the Ro*Tel into the slow cooker, along with the can of green chiles.
Cook on LOW for 7 hours. The meat will be falling-apart tender. Remove it to a casserole or deep-sided platter, along with enough of the cooking liquid to almost cover. Serve hot, over noodles or shredded in a taco or burrito, or allow to cool completely and refrigerate or freeze.
Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Balsamic and onion pot roast, from Kalyn's Kitchen
Roasted Hatch chile stew with sweet potato, corn and lime, from Gluten-free Goddess
Italian pot roast, from Simply Recipes
Green chile steak melt panini, from Panini Happy
Sweet and savory CrockPot pot roast, from A Year of Slow Cooking
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