Thursday, June 10, 2010

Simple Comfort Food

More often than not, we enjoy basic home-cooked dinners. My family, while willing to try new foods, simply enjoys no-frills meat and potatoes type dishes. One of the great things about the meals I'm sharing is the fact that the oven does most of the work. With some simple chopping and stirring, you can re-create these meals with little fuss.

I decided to revamp my pot roast recipe a little bit by braising my meat and roasting my vegetables separately. I found the flavors more pronounced and much tastier than the crockpot version.

Pot Roast
2 lb chuck roast (mine had a bone)
garlic powder
onion powder
black pepper
kosher salt
4 T butter
potatoes (I used local new potatoes, halved or quartered)
1 vidalia onion, sliced
3 large carrots, chopped (I left the peel on)
4 T olive oil

1. In a large stockpot, heat butter over medium-high heat. Sprinkle meat liberally with salt, pepper, garlic, and onion powder.
2. Brown meat on all sides. Place meat into roasting pan. Add one inch of water, cover and bake at 350 degrees for 3 hours.
3. On a large cookie sheet, combine remaining ingredients and season with salt and pepper.
4. Roast at 395 degrees for 30-40 minutes, or until caramelized and tender.

We really like ribs, but the baby-back variety is quite pricey and is fairly fatty with little meat. I typically buy the "country-style" spare ribs and with a little time in the oven, they fall right off of the bone! I baked a sweet potato for each of us, simply wrapping each one in foil and baking for about 1 1/2 hrs.

Country-Style Spare Ribs
spare ribs (1/2 lb for each person)
smoked paprika
cracked black pepper
dry mustard
kosher salt
1 cup ketchup
1 T white vinegar
2 T brown sugar
1 small vidalia onion, chopped

1. Sprinkle ribs liberally with paprika, mustard, salt and pepper. Place into roasting pan and fill with one inch of water. Cover and bake at 375 degrees for 2 hours.
2. Mix ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar and onion.
3. Remove meat from oven and drain water from pan. Cover ribs with sauce mixture and tent the aluminum foil loosely.
4. Bake for an additional hour before serving.


  1. haha...i almost had to do a double-take when i saw that final meal pic. look at my blog post "one-oven meals" under either the "beef" final pic looks similar! we think alike--OR our families are the same, with the same tastebuds, one or the other! ;)

  2. oh, that's pretty funny! It's probably a combination of the fact that we're scarily similar and that with our strong German roots this is what we gravitate towards! Well, at least I'm German (Oldhouser is my maiden name) and I think Curt is...not sure where you hail from! :) I think Eichelberg is a pretty safe bet, though!