Actually, I've done roasts before in the crock pot. That's the easy way. Mom always did them in the oven, but mine never turned out well that way (In my imagination, because I never actually tried it before.) So today I thought I'd experiment with the slow-cooker feature on my oven.
Two thoughts have prevented me from doing this before. They are 1: My gas oven will be running for hours, and gas costs like $3.50 a gallon these days. 2: Will it really work? and 3: Can I trust it not to burn my house down while I'm away?
So, I prepared the simplest roast I could think of. A three lb. three and a half dollar roast I bought on sale at Safeway. No sure what cut of meat it was, but I asked the butcher for something "really really cheap." I figured if I might ruin it, I didn't want to pay much.
Then I put my simple roast in a roasting pan, without a rack. Then I put some carrots beside it so it would look like I tried to serve more than one food group (or food pyramid piece) to my family. Slow Cooker button on Hi (like Hello, interestingly) and off to church I went feeling like a domestic queen for sure. I didn't tell Hubby that the oven would be on the whole time. He would likely have nixed the whole idea.
When we came back, the house was still standing and it smelled beautiful and beefy. The meat fell apart and the carrots were really salty from having cooked in beef juice and seasonings for 5 hours. It was delicious. Hubby requested that I make it ALL THE TIME. I'm pretty sure he clings to my successes with a little more intensity so he doesn't have to test out all my failures as often. The gravy was even good.
3 lbs cheap meat
2 Tbsp. Montreal Steak Seasoning
Rub meat with seasoning. Put in oven. Make sure oven is on.
2ish Tbsp. butter
1/4 c. flour
2 c. beef stock
seasonings to taste (salt, pepper, more montreal)
Melt butter, stir in flour and mix well. Add stock, seasonings and drippings. Stir until thickened. (I cheated here and used some potato flakes from the mashed potatoes I made from a bag, because my gravy wasn't as thick as I wanted.)
Voila! Dinner that hubby liked!
What I learned:
1. Meat is meat. Cheaper is not worse than expensive when slow cooked.
2. The slow cooker feature is for real on my oven and I may not be able to live without it from now on.
Still awaiting PG&E bill...