Monday, 21 June 2010

Make Ahead Shredded Beef Sandwiches

This past weekend was a busy one in our house. I hosted a 'not so surprise' 40th birthday party for my husband, Brad. Thankfully and accidentally, he found out about the party a week before so I didn't have to continue sneaking around buying food, cleaning the house (without making it 'too clean' that he'd suspect something was up), secretly making food, convincing him to cut the grass on Friday instead of the weekend etc etc. It was MUCH easier with him knowing. I still got the kudos for planning the party so it was a win-win. With the help of my mother-in-law and friend Allison making some salads to ease my stress I was much more relaxed than I was planning on being. The food was a success and the party was a lot of fun ... even the weather even cooperated in the end.

You know how I've mentioned in the past that making beef roasts was my Achilles Heel? Well, no more! I have now successfully made a beef roast which was served at the party. The curse of the rock hard beef roast has been lifted from me!

Was I nervous making a meal based on a type of food that I've only ever been able to cook with the consistency of a hockey puck or shoe leather? Oh ya. But my sister Jen came over and gave me her expertise. I don't think I was using the right type of beef roast in the past and was cooking it much too fast. Apparently long and slow cookin' is the way to go.

I loved the fact that I could make the meat the day before, store it in the fridge (along with the pan juices) then pop the meat in a couple of crockpots with the juices on the day of the party and voila! Tasty beef sandwiches!

Well, my roast was AWESOME! Served on ciabatta buns with fried onions and green peppers as well as horseradish mayo it was delicious! I hope that after several days of eating said beef sandwiches I'll still like them .... now all I need to do is work on downsizing the amount of food that I make for parties.

20lbs boneless blade beef roast (I had 3 small roasts that weighed 20lbs together)
salt and pepper
garlic powder

Preheat oven to 300F. Place roasts in roasting pans and fill with water so that the bottom inch of each roast is under water. Sprinkle roasts with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Cover and put in oven. Check on roasts every 90 minutes or so and baste with juices. Also make sure that the liquid around the roasts isn't too high that it will overflow. Cook for 9-10 hours.

Remove roasts and, with 2 forks, shred beef. Store in large plastic containers in the fridge.

Skim off fat from pan juices. Run pan juices through a strainer and store in a large juice container in the fridge. (I clearly labelled our juice jug because I didn't want my kids thinking they were pouring some apple cider when in fact it was beef juice. It would have been funny to witness .... but I'm not that mean).

The day you're serving the sandwiches, put meat into 2 large crockpots and pour half of the pan juices into each crockpot. Heat meat on low for 4-6 hours, mixing every once in awhile to help get the pan juices over the meat.

To serve: Using tongs place meat on a ciabatta bun and top with fried onions and green peppers as well as your choice of mayonnaise (my favourite is horseradish mayo). Enjoy!

Tip: I cooked the onions and green peppers a couple of hours before the party and put them in a small crockpot.

Yield: 40-50+ servings


Mags said...

I can't tell you how many roasts I ruined by not knowing which cut to buy and that the tastiest shredded beef comes from the long and slow process that you mentioned. I'm a sucker for roast beef sandwiches like this... yours looks delicious!

And a happy 40th to your hubby!

Laurie said...

I'm with you Mags. Apparently it took me years to learn that cheap roast + many hours = delicous, tender beef. :) Like you, I love roast beef sandwiches but after 3 days of them I think I'll freeze the leftovers and save them to eat in a couple of weeks. Too much of a good thing, I guess. ;)

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