2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 slices bacon, chopped
4- to 5-pound chuck roast, patted dry with paper towels
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 medium onion, peeled and sliced
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 tablespoons prepared mustard
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1-1/2 cups apple cider or apple juice
1 pound egg noodles, cooked according to package directions
1/4 cup unsalted butter
2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, chopped
1/4 cup sour cream
1. Heat a large Dutch oven or roasting pan with a lid over medium-high heat. When hot, add the vegetable oil and bacon. Sauté until the bacon is still limp, but cooked, about 3 minutes. Remove the bacon and set aside.
2. Season the meat with the salt and pepper and add it to the hot pan. Brown in the hot fat on all sides, about 3 minutes per side, then transfer it to a plate. Add the onion, carrots and celery to the pan. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Lower heat to medium if the vegetables are browning too fast.
3. Return the roast to the pan. Combine the mustard, brown sugar and apple cider. Pour liquid over the meat and vegetables. Add the cooked bacon and cover with the lid. Turn the stove to the lowest heat and cook for 2-1/2 to 3 hours or until tender or bake in a 300 degrees Fahrenheit oven for the same amount of time. Check every 30 minutes. Lower heat if it is cooking too rapidly, and add more apple cider or water if the liquid reduces more than halfway.
4. Cook and drain the noodles and toss them with the butter and parsley. Keep hot.
5. Remove the roast to a cutting board. Skim the fat from the cooking juices.Cook the juices over medium-high heat to reduce, about 5 minutes. Taste frequently. Adjust the seasoning of the vegetables and juices in the pan with salt and pepper. Stir in the sour cream and adjust the seasoning again if necessary. Slice the roast on a cutting board and serve the meat with the noodles topped with the pan sauce and vegetables. Serve hot.
Carla Snyder is chef de cuisine of the Western Reserve School of Cooking where she teaches professional and avocational cooking classes. Her first book, “The Mixer Bible” co-authored with Meredith Deeds, is now available in the United States and Canada. The duo’s second book, “The Big Book of Appetizers,” will be on the shelves in spring 2006.