Mr. Comfortable told me that, in his youth, there was a drink called a “Sneaky Pete” which was beer and cheap wine mixed together. I think this concoction was something Mr. C and his college buddies made up. However, I’m adventurous when it comes to cooking and I really liked the name so I came up with Sneaky Pot Roast!
Right up front I have to tell you I don’t like beer at all. I’ve tried it several times. I drive Pete (my son who is not the reason for the name of this pot roast) crazy asking him to try a sip of the seasonal brews he sometimes buys. They all taste the same to me. They’re bitter and have the taste that I imagine closely resembles panther
p**s …uhh..urine. It’s strange since I do like beer brats and lots of other foods cooked with beer. There are a couple of wines I’ll drink but I’m not a big wine drinker either. In fact, I avoid alcohol most of the time. But Sneaky Pete Pot Roast is really tasty!
I don’t add potatoes to the pot roast because I normally serve this roast with garlic mashed potatoes. If you prefer you can cut up several large potatoes and add them to the Dutch oven when you add the carrots.
I had a really large onion so I cut it all up in thick slices.
The carrots and celery were chopped up next. I used big chunks for both of these, as well.
I melted 3 tablespoons of butter in my cast iron Dutch oven and, when it was foaming, I added the onions.
I seasoned the onions with salt and pepper and let them cook until they were slightly caramelized. The sweetness of the onions helps offset the more bitter taste of the beer.
While the onions were cooking I seasoned all four sides of the roast with salt and pepper.
When the onions were done I moved them to a bowl and added a tablespoon of vegetable oil to the Dutch oven.
Next I seared the pot roast in the hot oil on all four sides.
When the roast was nicely seared I removed it and deglazed the Dutch oven with the beer. I added in the beef broth, the red wine and a tablespoon of sugar because it helps cut the bitterness of the beer.
I put the roast back in the Dutch oven, poured the onions back in and put some of them on top of the roast. After the roast had cooked on medium heat for about 30 minutes I added the carrots and celery and reduced the heat to a simmer.
The roast simmered for 4 hours.
I removed the roast and the vegetables and poured the liquid into a large bowl. Then I melted 4 tablespoons of butter in the Dutch oven. When it was foaming I whisked in 1/4 cup of flour. I kept whisking it until the flour and butter were well combined and had become a golden brown. This took about 10 minutes over low heat.
I slowly poured in two cups of the reserved cooking liquid and whisked it all until it was thoroughly mixed. Then I increased the heat and, whisking constantly, brought the mixture to a boil until it reached the thickness I wanted for my gravy.
I admit I was worried when I made this pot roast. Cheap wine and beer together was definitely a risky move! But I was pleasantly surprised as the liquid mellowed as it cooked and the end result was a tender, juicy pot roast with a unique and tasty twist!
Sneaky Pete Pot Roast
- 3 – 4 lb. pot roast (I used bottom round)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 7 tablespoons butter, divided
- 2 onions, sliced thick
- 3 carrots, cut into chunks
- 2 stalks celery, cut into chunks
- 16 oz. beer (of your choice)
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 2 cups beef broth
- 1 tablespoon sugar (optional but strongly recommended)
- 1/4 cup flour
- Melt 3 tablespoons butter in Dutch oven.
- When butter is foaming add sliced onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions have caramelized a bit (about 8 – 10 minutes).
- While onions are cooking pat the pot roast dry with paper towels and season all four sides with salt and pepper.
- Remove onions from Dutch oven and sear pot roast on all sides.
- Remove pot roast and deglaze Dutch oven with the beer.
- Pour the red wine and the beef broth into the Dutch oven and stir in sugar (if using).
- Return pot roast to Dutch oven and place onions on top of and around roast.
- Cook on medium low heat for 30 minutes then add the carrots and celery.
- Reduce heat to a simmer and cover Dutch oven.
- Allow pot roast to simmer for 3 1/2 – 4 hours (until it is falling apart tender).
- Remove pot roast and vegetables from Dutch oven.
- Pour off liquid from Dutch oven, reserving it.
- Melt remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in Dutch oven over low heat.
- Add flour, whisking constantly, until the flour is well combined with the butter and has turned a golden brown (about 10 minutes).
- Slowly add 2 cups of the reserved cooking liquid (you can add more beef broth or water if you don’t have two cups) to the flour mixture. Whisk until combined.
- Increase heat to high and continue whisking until gravy has thickened to the desired consistency.
- Slice roast and serve with gravy.
I made garlic mashed red skin potatoes for the Sneaky Pete Pot Roast and green beans from my garden. This is definitely a pot roast I’ll make again!