Pot Roast

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Times Calendar Cookbook

By Katie Stewart

Published 1977

  • About

This is the way to cook joints of meat like topside, fresh silver side or brisket, cuts that benefit from the gently moist method of cooking. If you use wine or cider the gravy will be rich and full of flavour. Choose a deep casserole with a tight-fitting lid that will keep in all the moisture.


  • 1–1.25 kg/2½-3 lb topside of beef
  • 25 g/1 oz dripping or white cooking fat
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 onion
  • 1 stalk celery
  • 1 leek
  • 1.5 dl/¼ pint red wine or cider
  • bay leaf
  • stock or water (see method)
  • 1 level tablespoons cornflour
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • salt and freshly milled pepper


    Add the meat to the hot dripping melted in a heavy fireproof casserole. Brown on both sides and then remove from the pan. Peel the carrots and slice in half lengthways. Peel the onion and slice thickly, cut up the celery and wash and halve the leek. Place the vegetables in the casserole and allow them to fry gently for a few moments to absorb the fat. Add sufficient wine or cider just to cover the vegetables and bring to a simmer.

    Replace the meat in the casserole setting it on top of the vegetables. Add the bay leaf and cover with a lid. Place in the centre of a very moderate oven (160°C., 325°F., Gas Mark 3) and cook for 2–2½ hours.

    When the meat is cooked, lift from the pan and keep hot. Strain off the liquor, skim and make it up to 4 dl (¾ pint) with stock or water. Add the cornflour blended with the water and stir until boiling. Check seasoning with salt and pepper and serve as gravy.