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Roasts ~ My favorite comfort food

Written by Anna Aughenbaugh
When I was growing up, my mom had us clear our homework off of the dining room table so that we could eat Sunday dinner on it. She would put a roast in the oven before going to church, and its wonderful aroma would meet us at the door when we returned. Memories of those meals have made roasts one of my favorite comfort food.
    About a half a pound of boneless meat is needed to serve one person, or one pound of bone-in meat. I usually cook it with potatoes, onions and carrots, so there’s only one pan to wash. If there are leftovers, we have sandwiches, with it sliced cold or hot, with gravy. Mom made me happy when she ground the meat and added pickle relish and mayonnaise.
    I like to make hash by grinding the cooked roast in the food processor with cooked potatoes and raw onions. Add enough broth to hold it together; then sprinkle with salt and pepper; cook in a lightly greased skillet until heated through, stirring often.         Before cooking a roast, rub it with vegetable oil, put in pan and place it near the bottom of the oven at 500 degrees for 30 minutes to create a brown crust and to seal in the juices. Lower the temp to 350 and roast another 45 minutes. Test for doneness by sticking a meat thermometer in the middle of the meat until it registers 115 to 125 degrees for rare to medium. The roast will continue to cook after it is taken from the oven, raising the temperature another 10 degrees.              
    To keep the juices in the meat, let it rest after it is done – five minutes for thin cuts and 20 minutes for roasts. This also makes the meat easier to slice; be sure to slice against the grain.

Country Pot Roast
3 to 4 lb. chuck or rump roast
1 Tbsp. paprika
¼ tsp. pepper    
2 Tbsp. Canola oil
½ cup water
1 bay leaf
1 lge. onion, quartered
4 carrots, cut into chunks
4 potatoes, peeled & quartered
2 cups canned tomatoes
1 cup plain yogurt (optional)
    Sprinkle roast with paprika and pepper. Heat oil in Dutch oven; brown roast on all sides to seal in juices. Add water and bay leaf. Cover; simmer 1 ½ hours. Add vegetables; simmer 1 hour more, or until tender. Remove from heat; slowly stir in yogurt to serve as gravy. Makes 6 to 8 servings. Option: Put veggies and meat into crock pot; Cook 1 hour on high, then lower heat and cook 8 hours more.   

Broccoli Salad
2 cups cut-up fresh broccoli
2 Tbsp. chopped red onion
¼ cup raisins
5 pieces bacon, cooked & crumbled
Dressing:
1 ½ Tbsp. vinegar
¼ cup mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. sugar
    In a medium bowl, mix salad ingredients. In a small bowl, mix dressing ingredients; pour over salad. Serves 2 to 4.

Wacky Cake
This is a great dessert to make when you are low on eggs.
1 ½ cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. cocoa
1 Tbsp. vinegar
1 cup water
6 Tbsp. Canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla
    In an ungreased 9x13” pan, mix flour, baking soda, sugar and cocoa. Press a spoon into the mixture to make 3 holes; pour vinegar, oil and vanilla into them. Pour water over all; mix with a fork until well blended. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes, or until it tests done with a toothpick.