The Foodie Files

Ben Whelan

This is not only a hearty meal that will help you weather the harsh winds of fall, but will provide you with leftovers for the rest of the week. This is real simplistic, meat-and-potatoes comfort food at its best.

The roast is prepared in traditional style without too many bells and whistles that spotlights the deep, earthy flavors of the beef and keeps things straightforward and easy.

The puree is really just a dressed up version of mashed potatoes and gravy, with the added sweetness from the parsnips (a root vegetable in the turnip family) and an infusion of intense, rich flavors.

Eye Round Roast

The trick here is getting the right piece of meat to start with. Not every supermarket has eye round roast in stock, because it’s a very popular piece of meat and tends to go pretty fast. I recommend going to McKinnons Meat Market in Davis Square, which not only has really excellent meat but also will custom cut many things. It’s also really freakin cheap. You should look for a roast of between 2-2.5lbs with a decent amount of fat. In today’s health conscious world that sounds crazy, but the fat is chock full of flavor and will melt and baste the meat as it roasts.

1 Eye Round Roast; 2-2.5lbs

2 Cloves Garlic, sliced

Salt & Pepper

1) Preheat the oven to 375°

2) Take a small knife and make evenly spaced, vertical cuts into one side of the meat.

3) Stuff a piece of sliced garlic into each hole, and then season with salt and pepper

4) Roast for 1-1.5 hours or until meat reaches desired doneness

Potato-Parsnip puree

The technique here is very similar to what you would do to make mashed potatoes, just with a couple of upscale twists. The one thing you should make sure is that your parsnip and potato pieces are around the same size, so that they finish cooking at the same time. Otherwise, it should be very simple.

4 Medium sized potatoes, peeled and cubed

2 Parsnips, peeled and cubed

¼ C Red wine

¼ C Heavy/Light Cream

½ C Chicken stock/broth, homemade or from a can

¼ C Brandy

1) Boil enough water in a stock pot to cover your cubed potatoes and parsnips

2) Add vegetables and boil until soft; 20-25 minutes

3) Drain vegetables and put them in a blender or food processor; if you don’t have a large enough blender or food processor, do it in batches.

4) Add the liquids and blend until smooth and creamy

Slice the roast to serve, throw some potato puree on a plate and add the vegetable of your choice (preferably green, to make it pretty), and it’s chow time. Because all of the elements of this meal take a long time to cook and are almost certain to provide leftovers, so this is a perfect Sunday night meal to set yourself up for the week. Bon appetit and let me know how it goes!

Ben Whelan can be reached at [email protected]