Cooking with beer is something we do a lot of.
We use it to braise, to marinate, in sauces, vinaigrettes, reductions, and even desserts. I think beer’s versatility is as great as wine. There is so many flavors of beer out there to play with. There’s dry hoppy ales, sweet and strong beers, wheat beers, crisp lagers, and everything from light to super dark.
This beef benefits from a dark beer. We use a dunkel lager, which is a dark lager that isn’t too hoppy and has a nice malt character. Try it with your favorite beer for a different version.
beef chuck roast, about 3 pounds
2 tablespoons of kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons Maggi seasoning or soy sauce
1 ½ cups dark beer
6 fresh sage leaves, left whole
2 fresh or dried bay leaves
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and left whole
2 small turnips, unpeeled
1 medium celery root
1 small leek
One of the most frequent problems with braising at home is the initial browning of the meat. For restaurant quality sauce make sure you brown the meat heavily in the pan. Let it brown in the butter and oil in small batches. Don’t overcrowd the pan or it will lose heat and you won’t get that nice even browning that you want. This will add to the flavor and ensure a nice rich sauce.
Start by prepping your ingredients. Trim the top of the leeks by about two inches. It’s fine to use most of the green part. After you’ve trimmed the top, split it in half lengthwise and rinse out any dirt or sand. Now cut it into half inch pieces and set aside.
Using a sharp knife, trim away all the outer parts of the celery root, leaving only the white interior.
Cut the celery root and turnips into one inch squares and set aside.
Cut the chuck roast into four equal sized portions and rub the meat with the salt and pepper.
Heat a cast iron dutch oven or roasting pan that is large enough for the meat and vegetables. Add the oil and the butter. Add the meat to the pan so that one side of the is touching the bottom of the pan. Brown the meat on all sides, being sure that you have a really nice dark brown color. This will take about 10 – 15 minutes or so.
Once all of the meat is browned, remove it from the pan and let it rest. After the meat is removed, add the leeks and the garlic. Lightly brown the leeks then add the Maggi seasoning, beer, sage, and bay leaves. Once it comes to a boil, add the browned meat and turn it down to a simmer.
Cover the pot and keep on low heat for 2 hours. After 2 hours check the meat for tenderness. You want to be able to pierce the meat easily with a meat fork. Once the meat is tender add the turnips and celery root.
Continue to cook uncovered for 20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Remove the meat from the pan and check the sauce for seasoning. Add salt and pepper if necessary.
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