From Smitten Kitchen via Gourmet.  The idea is to use a cheaper cut of meat, but this is definitely something I would serve to company…oh my goodness it’s tasty!.  The other highlight is that you can make it ahead, in fact, you should make it ahead.  Even if you’re serving it the same day, I would plan on having it ready a little early, allow it to cool enough to manually shred the meat, remove all fat and grisly bits, and then gently reheat your now perfect protein in the amazing (simple!) sauce.  My only addition to this meal was to set the roast on 2 thickly sliced onions, more goodness in the pot can never hurt – enjoy!

Oven-Braised Beef with Tomatoes and Garlic

2 large onions, peeled and thickly sliced

1, 3 to 4 lb. boneless beef chuck, tied with string (ask your butcher to prep it for you!)

salt and freshly ground pepper

1 can (28 oz/540 mL) whole tomatoes, broken up with your hands or scissors

1 head of garlic, separated into cloves (you can peel them, but unpeeled works too, as long as the eaters are aware)

Preheat the oven to 300 and lay the onion slices on the bottom of your braising pot.  Place the beef on top of the onions – it can be a tight fit, the roast will shrink quite a bit – and season it generously with salt and freshly ground pepper, then pour in the tomatoes and scatter the garlic around it.  Braise in the center of the oven, covered, for 3 to 4 hours until the meat is very tender – I ended up leaving mine for close to 5 hours and it was still beautiful.

To serve, you can either take the time to remove the fat and shred the beef ahead and then gently reheat it all in the sauce, or, Deb recommends slicing it thickly, putting it on a platter and pouring the sauce over top (and allowing everyone to peel their own garlic).  This is wonderful with pasta – we enjoyed ours with mashed potatoes.

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