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Slow Cooker Beef Ragu

I know you all have heard me say this before, but I love my slow cooker. I am still terrified of it, am still convinced that every siren screaming past my office window is headed for my house, but still am totally enamored by it.

By the way, I live 5 miles from my office, across a river, around a bay, and unless my entire neighborhood was aflame, there would be no possible way fire engines from a fire house near my office would be going to MY house!

But I digress – as I often do.

There really is nothing more comforting than coming home to dinner almost ready and the house filled with comforting aromas – just like every one else does every day in my house! I can see why they keep coming back! If I came home to that every day, I would never leave home either!

Winter into Spring in New York City is a very strange thing. One day it’s freezing, the next it’s hot, and some days manage to pack both into them. I wanted to squeeze this recipe in before it was too hot for this type of meal. The reality is, this is a good all year round recipe. This would be great for sandwiches.

The recipe in Everyday Food suggests serving this over pasta or polenta (which would be FAB-ulous), but I have mashed potato heads in my house, and I couldn’t imagine getting by serving this any other way. Wait, maybe over biscuits or with biscuits!

Okay, I lied! But still try this your tummies will thank you!

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced small
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 T tomato paste
  • 3 T chopped fresh oregano leaves (or 3 t dried)
  • 4 lb beef chuck, halved
  • coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 2 C water
  • 1 to 2 T red wine vinegar

NOTE: Cut as much fat away from the beef chuck as possible.  I used dried oregano.

In a 5 to 6 quart slow cooker, stir together onion, garlic, tomato paste and oregano. Season roast with salt and pepper.

Place roast on top of onion mixture, add water. Cover and cook on high until meat is tender and can easily be pulled apart with a fork – about 4 1/2 hours on high or 9 hours on low.

Let cool for 10 minutes, then shred meat in slow cooker with 2 forks. Stir in vinegar to taste. Serves 6 and freezes beautifully.

NOTE: I used two tablespoons of vinegar. I liked the vinegary kick it gave the beef.

NOTE: One of my favorite parts about this slow cooker recipe is not having to actually saute or brown or cook anything before starting. for me, there’s nothing worse than standing bleary eyed in the morning, cooking things before I head off for work. I want to throw it all in and have magic happen while I am at work counting how many times my house burned down!

 

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7 Responses

  1. I still need to get a slow cooker. I love how easy this is to put together.

  2. Aw! Sorry to hear that your slow cooker has you on pins & needles when a siren goes by. But, your beef looks so delicious!

  3. I absolutely need to add this recipe to my life. I LOVE my crockpot. Please don’t ever separate me from it. I know exactly what you mean about coming home to a house already smelling of deliciousness when you just walk in the door. It’s weird, but on crockpot days, I actually am happier ALL DAY at work because I frequently think to myself, “Damn, I’m good…dinner is ALREADY MADE!” 🙂 Happy Hump day and I am so glad you are back!

  4. This looks like leftovers would be great on a nice crusty roll….yum…

  5. Oh I love when it gets that tender!

  6. Good to see you are really back, not just stopping by. That meat looks so good and I can totally understand that you do not like the feeling of browning meat or onions in the morning before going to work…

  7. Oh, yum! A good reason to dust off my slow cooker 🙂

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