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Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunday Pot Roast

A good pot roast with vegetables, green bean casserole, rice and gravy, sliced tomatoes and Mama's biscuits is the typical Sunday Dinner that I remember growing up. The smell takes me back to Mama's kitchen. If you add a lot more pepper to the pot roast or some fried chicken, that smell takes me to Grandmama Bradham's. The smell of cooking cabbage always takes me to Grandmama Elliott's kitchen. 

“No one who cooks, cooks alone. Even at her most solitary, a cook in the kitchen is surrounded by generations of cooks past, the advice and menus of cooks present, the wisdom of cookbook writers.” 
― Laurie Colwin


Sunday Pot Roast

4 pound chuck roast
salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste
2 tbsp oil
1 packet dry onion soup mix
1 cup beef broth or water
3 carrots, chopped
1 onion, chopped
3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
8 ozs button mushrooms, wiped clean with a paper towel

Season the chuck roast with salt, pepper and garlic powder, to taste, on all sides. Dust with flour and brown in oil on all sides in a large skillet over medium to high heat. Place in the roasting pan and add the soup mix, water, carrots, onion, potatoes and mushrooms. Cover and cook at 350 degrees for 2 or 3 hours. (The longer it cooks the more tender it becomes, but don’t let all the liquid burn off.)

Remove the meat and vegetables. Make gravy by adding a cornstarch slurry to the juices… 1 tbsp cornstarch to ¼ cup cold water… add to the juices and bring to a boil. 

Mama's Short Biscuits

2 cups self-rising flour
2/3 cup shortening
2/3 cup milk

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Put 2 cups self-rising flour in a medium sized bowl. Take 2/3 cup vegetable shortening, and cut in with fingertips until dough looks like small peas.

Make a well in the center and add 2/3 cup milk slowly, mixing with floured fingertips until it gets sticky. Keeping hands floured, shape biscuits with hands and place them on an ungreased pan. Mama always placed the biscuit down and pressed three fingers into each one leaving ridges… Bake 10-12 minutes.

This is a very sticky dough. Don’t be tempted to keep adding flour. The more you mix, the tougher the biscuit. Just keep flouring your hands and it will coat the biscuit so that you can handle them.

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