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Pit-Master Aaron Franklin shares the secrets behind his Grandparents' perfect Pot Roast. You can taste this incredibly tender and flavorful meal for yourself when he serves it up in Austin for the inaugural launch of his new food and music festival, Hot Luck. Find out more information about Hot Luck here: https://www.hotluckfest.com
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- I think it'd be pretty safe to say that my grandparents' pot roast is like the most iconic dish of my childhood. This whole restaurant is pretty much based on that pot roast. I guess that kind of got me into barbecue in a lot of ways. Brisket is just really smoky pot roast. That's kind of what I was going for, I was trying to mimic that. So my name is Aaron Franklin, my wife and I run Franklin Barbecue here in Austin, Texas. When I actually do have the time to make this dish, I guess I can kind of pull skills from cookin' barbecue over the years and I can kind of apply different things and as I become a better cook I can kind of reapply them to this dish, so it's really gotten exponentially better over the years. For the pot roast, I like to start off with a chuck roast. About five pounds is pretty good. Clean it up a little bit, if it's got some fat trim it off. Make a bunch of gouges, some pretty deep cuts, and you want to insert the garlic into those cuts. I hope you like garlic, my grandma did. She still does, actually. Throw a little bit of salt, stick it in the refrigerator. At that point, you've got a ragin' hot skillet. Get it super-duper hot, put some oil on there, and sear it off really quick. Once you sear off the pot roast, put it aside. De-glaze the pan, get it hot again, throw some onions some garlic in there. Get 'em caramelized pretty good. I like 'em a little black and crusty on the outside. Throw those in the braising pan with the roast with a little bit of stock, shiitake mushrooms for some umami, little squirt of tomato concentrate, couple splashes of Worcestershire sauce. Throw it in the oven, 275, it's probably gonna take about eight hours. You wanna cook it fast enough where the fat renders but you wanna cook it low enough where it actually like breaks down over time and gets super-duper tender. At that point you're gonna take it out of the braising pan. Strain out the solids, all the mushrooms, the onions, all that stuff. So after you strain the braising liquid, you're gonna make your rue. That's gonna be one cup vegetable oil, one cup flour. Start it kinda cold, mix it up in a cup, put it in the skillet, heat it all up at the same time. It's gonna take about 30 minutes and you're gonna have to stir it the whole time. You can't stop it from moving. It's gonna get darker and darker and darker. You want it about the color of a milk chocolate bar. And then you're gonna whisk in the hot stock. At that point you've got your gravy, put your roast back in. You know, if you're making a pot roast you've got all this gravy on the side. You've gotta have something to put in on. Mashed potatoes. So for the mashed potatoes I'm gonna use six russet potatoes, medium sized. Put 'em in cold water, heavily salted of course. You're gonna cook it until it's just tender enough to stick a fork and the potato slides right off. Throw the butter in there, let it hang out for a little bit. And then right before you wanna serve it, take a potato masher, mash it up, get the butter incorporated, throw a little bit of heavy cream in there, salt and pepper to taste. This is about the consistency I'm looking for, oh yeah. For the corn, I start off with eight ears of fresh corn. Shuck the corn, cut off the kernels, throw 'em in the bowl. Then you're gonna take the back of the knife and you're gonna scrape the cob, so you're gonna cream the cobs. Throw a little bit of salt, a little bit of pepper, then you're gonna squirt a little bit of grape seed oil just to lubricate the kernels a little bit, mix it in. Stick it in the refrigerator, you want this stuff really cold. Squirt a little bit of oil in the skillet. As soon as it's really smokin' throw the corn in and keep it moving, you're gonna toss the corn a whole bunch. So as soon as the corn's done cookin' you're gonna put 1/8 pound, that's a half stick of butter, into the skillet, you're gonna let the corn stop cookin'. Let it rest, it's ready to eat, it's done, go for it. So at this point, your friends are comin' over, your family's gettin' real hungry. Put the pot roast on the plate, put a little bit of gravy on it, scoop some mashed potatoes, throw some corn on there, put some gravy on it, grab a beer, eat dinner. All these fancy food are great and stuff, but half the time what I really want when I sit down is just a basic, simple, really perfect meal. Ya know, something that's like pot roast, mashed potatoes, it's home cookin'. Man, just like the way that the meat is. It's so garlicky, it's super salty, the gravy's really really good. The corn's super good, it's really buttery. It's a great meal. This is totally something that I would love to cook for my family, and it would be really special for me to make this for my family because they made it for me my whole time growing up, this is pretty cool. I'm glad I finally learned how to cook like my grandparents.