Encouraging fall

September 26, 2016

Ready to go in the oven. Fall goodness, right here.

Ready to go in the oven. Fall goodness, right here.

I cooked a pot roast yesterday. It was 95 degrees outside on Sept. 25, and I cooked a pot roast.

However, the high today is in the 70s, and I was anticipating the about-damn-time arrival of fall-ish temperatures. Not to mention I was jonesing for some pot roast.

Or, more to the point, jonesing for the vegetable beef soup that will come from the remains of Mr. Pot Roast later on this week. As the temps are supposed to be, at least, no longer at mid-summer levels, it will be a suitable time to make vegetable beef soup, which we can have with either grilled cheese (for Child A) or pimiento cheese (for me) sammiches. Which, in turn, will require baking some bread.

Speaking of bread. I am pronouncing the sourdough a failed experiment, chunking out the starter, and going back to normal yeast bread. I envy those of you who can make sourdough. My experience was not a successful one. I perused recipes last night, and I believe there is a loaf of King Arthur honey-whole wheat-oatmeal bread in my future.

Ready to go in my tummy. More fall goodness!

Ready to go in my tummy. More fall goodness!

But back to the pot roast, only the second time I have cooked anything in the past two weeks, as I have been abhorrently (I’m not sure that’s a word, but I just made it one, so there) busy. It was coming up on Sunday, and I wanted something easy for Sunday dinner, and I wanted vegetable beef soup after the cold front moved in, so I laid a chuck roast out to thaw on Saturday night. Sunday morning, in the only bit of energy I expended all day, I salted, peppered and browned it; plopped it in my big baking dish, poured about 2/3 cup of red wine and a half-cup of water over it, surrounded it with potatoes, carrots and onions, and slid it into a 300-degree oven for five hours.

I should have sprinkled a little rosemary on it, but I didn’t. No matter. It was still good. Meltingly tender. The flavor wasn’t quite up with what I’d had in the last roast, but it was nothing to sneeze at.  And it’ll be damn fine in vegetable beef soup later on.

acbf16_homepage-art1In other kitchen news of note, I am seriously contemplating entering the Arkansas Cornbread Festival cornbread contest in Little Rock the end of October.  I believe I could enter my tomato cobbler, which is at heart a cornbread dish, and have a contender. I think I’d have a shot at winning, and besides, it’s a benefit for the Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, which is one of my favorite charities. The downside: I would need to bring with me at least seven 7 x 11 pans of cornbread, along with a like amount of a side dish to go with it, to serve, and the logistical difficulties of preparing that much cornbread and getting it to Little Rock, plus, how would it taste cold? Because there’s no way to keep it hot. Plus a couple of slow-cookers full of beans to go with it. Would be a lot simpler if I wasn’t two hours away from the festival site, which will mean me doing my cooking the day before. And I’m not sure I can still get enough ripe tomatoes to do it.

Will have to ponder on that.

Speaking of beans, my Rancho Gordo order came in a couple of weeks ago, and I haven’t cooked any because, well, I haven’t cooked. I’m thinking beans may be on the agenda some evening this week, too.

You ‘n y’mama ‘n ’em have to promise to buy a ticket to the Cornbread Festival and come see me if I do enter, OK?



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