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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

W4DW- French Dip

In honor of Beef month, I am going to try something new.  Hopefully, I can start something called What’s for Dinner Wednesdays.  This month I will showcase some of my family’s favorite recipes featuring beef.  In the coming months, I am hoping some of my Farm Mom friends will share some of their recipes.  You see, I have friends from North Carolina to California and they raise everything from almonds to rice to sweet potatoes and strawberries.

It seems that when we get to the end of the beef supply in the freezer there is always quite a few roasts left in the freezer.  Here is a great recipe I have found for a crock pot French Dip.

1.  I like to use a 3 pound roast, usually a chuck roast.  Place in the crock pot.  Our beef is raised on grass for most of their life.  The last 120 days they are fed a diet of ground corn and soybean meal.  The corn is much higher in energy than grass and helps the calves put on some fat that is needed to make the beef tender and juicy.

2.  Add 2 cups of water, ½ cup soy sauce, 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, 1 teaspoon dried thyme, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 bay leaf and 3-5 whole peppercorns.  Did you know that soy sauce really does have soybeans in it?  And did you know that nearly 75% of the items found in the grocery store contain soy in some form?

3.  Cover and cook on high for 5-6 hours or 8-10 hours on low or until the beef is tender.  Remove meat from broth, shred with forks and keep warm.  The crock pot is a life saver for me when we are busy working 12 and 14 hour days.

4.  Strain broth and skim off fat.  
5.  Pour broth into small cups for dipping. 
6.  Serve beef on French rolls.  I like to make my own rolls when I have time.  I have a great recipe that uses my trusty bread machine.  Leave me a comment if you would like me to post it on a What’s for Dinner Wednesday.

I have found that you can make this recipe ahead and freeze the meat with the broth until you need it.  

 I try to keep my freezer stocked with food that can be heated up in a hurry.  There are some days when I leave the house that I may not walk back in until the boys are starving and then there are the harvest and planting days that are coming up rapidly. 

And there are days like last night.  As I was making my sandwich, to take a picture of it, I look out the window to see the 4-H lambs grazing in front of the house. O.M.G.  These are not yet lambs you can walk up to and pet.  Mr. Responsible had went in to give them some straw after the rainstorms and didn’t latch the gate.  20 minutes later, after calling The Farmer and my father-in-law in to help, I grabbed the really crazy one by the back leg.  What do city moms do for fun?  I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t have things like this pop up…life would be boring.  Oh, and the Border Collies and Australian Shepherd were no help getting them caught.  

Well, at least the meat and broth was still in the Crock Pot so it was warm when we all got to go back in the house.  I am thinking I will be finding a new gate for the lamb pen tomorrow.  Hope you enjoy the French Dip! 

French Dip
    1 (3 lb) chuck roast                               1 t. dried thyme
    2 c. water                                               1 t. garlic powder
    ½ c. soy sauce                                       1 bay leaf
    1 t. dried rosemary                                3-5 whole peppercorns
    8 French rolls split

    Place roast in a slow cooker.  Add water, soy sauce, and      
    seasonings.  Cover and cook on high for 5-6 hours (or on low
    8-10 hours) or until beef is tender.  Remove meat from broth;
    shred with forks and keep warm.  Strain broth; skim off fat.
    Pour broth into small cups for dipping.  Serve beef on rolls. 

- A Kansas Farm Mom

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