Ethel’s Pot Roast

Take a  3 lb. blade-in beef shoulder, brown in oil with onion and crushed garlic, and cover with water or stock by half in a Dutch oven. Add about a pound peeled red potatoes (small whole or large in quarters), and two cups each  chopped celery and carrots. Salt lightly, and season with black pepper, thyme and bay. Cook in a slow oven (300) until meat is tender, about two hours. Use some broth for gravy, the rest as stock.

Pickled Pepper Roast

Most recipes for this old buffet dish involve pepperoncini, though there’s no reason not to use pickled cherry peppers, banana peppers or another pickled vegetable such as okra or green tomatoes, but not cucumbers. I mean, think about it.

Marinate a lean cut of beef in the pickling solution or vinegar and water (2:1) overnight or longer if you like, place meat in a covered baking dish with the pickled vegetables, plenty of garlic, freshly-ground black pepper and enough water to cover half the meat; you shouldn’t have to add any salt to this at all. Cook in a slow oven (300) until the beef is quite tender, chop or shred, add reduced liquid and serve warm or cold with hard rolls, a mild horseradish sauce and/or a good mustard of your choice. It should go without saying that this is one of those dishes that’s better the next day, but I’ll mention it.