Posts Tagged ‘Franklin County Massachusetts’

Cider Days and Cider Pot Roast

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

Cider Pot Roastweb

Life slows down in early November here in western Massachusetts. Our leaves have begun their steep decline: the bright colors of the local landscape are fast giving way to the grays and silvers that foretell winter’s whites.
Halloween is over (each day I tell myself I will put away the orange lights and haunted houses TOMORROW!), and the family bustle of Thanksgiving has yet to sneak up on us. We might have nothing to do in the hilltowns—if it weren’t for Cider Days.
Cider Days were started about 15 years ago in the quiet town of Colrain, where our lovely hard West County Cider was born. The annual event (which takes place this coming weekend) has several functions.
It celebrates the end of the harvest season. It educates interested folks in the ins and outs of cider making (both hard and sweet) and cider cookery. And it gives local residents a final fall festival of demonstrations, sales, and hearty meals.
Lots of local restaurateurs will be serving apple- and cider-themed dishes, including my friends at the Green Emporium, where apple pizza and apple martinis will be among the featured dishes.
If you’re in the area, take advantage of this final chance to get outdoors before the snow falls, to ponder the harvest and the winter to come.
If you’re not, you may use your own local cider in this slightly sweet pot roast, adapted from cider expert Vrest Orton.
Cider Pot Roast
1-1/2 cups sweet cider (plus more later if needed)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 teaspoons salt
2 cinnamon sticks
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
5 cloves
1 large onion, sliced
1 3-to-4-pound pot roast
flour as needed
canola oil as needed
1 pound carrots, cut into fairly small slices
Combine the cider, sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and onion. Pour this marinade over the beef, and let it stand, covered, in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Turn and baste from time to time. Remove the roast from the marinade (save the marinade!), and sprinkle it with flour.
Heat the oil, and brown the meat in it in a Dutch oven. Lower the heat, add the marinade and about 1 cup water, and cover tightly. Simmer for 3 hours. After the first hour, be sure to turn the roast every half hour or so, and to add more cider and water if the meat looks a bit dry.
At the end of the 3 hours, throw in the carrots; make sure they are covered with liquid. Cook for another 1 to 2 hours. Serve with noodles. Serves 4 to 6.

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