Beating the Heat: Pot Roast From an Improvised Summer Kitchen


Pot Roast

Pot Roast

This summer is one for the record books.  With extremes of heat and drought across the country, the living is anything but easy. I am happy to be living in Wisconsin where things are less brutal, but I do have one serious concern.

I am addicted to cooking–and cooking heats up the house.

I have been developing adaptations on an ongoing basis–bake bread at 11 PM with the windows wide open on the rare nights where temperatures drop.  And today, I moved the roaster outside to the patio to make pot roast in an improvised summer kitchen.

My Summer Kitchen

My Summer Kitchen

Since I was getting creative, I did a more involved roast (with wine!) based on another blog recipe.  Here is my version:

Pot Roast with Wine


  • 1-4 lb. boneless beef chuck or arm roast
  •  2 tsp. thyme
  •  2 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 tsp. black pepper, coarsely ground
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1 tsp. brown sugar
  • 3 pieces smoked bacon, chopped
  • 2 c. dry red wine
  • 1 dozen scallions
  • 1/2 lb mushrooms
  • 1 head garlic, cloves peeled
  • 8-10 carrots, peeled and cut in half
  • 1/4 c chopped celery root
  • 6-8 potatoes


1)  Mix thyme, paprika, salt, pepper, mustard and brown sugar. Pat the roast dry and rub the spice blend over the all sides of the roast.

Apply Herb Rub

Apply Herb Rub

2) In a large pan, fry the bacon pieces over medium heat until well browned. Remove from the pan, and reserve leaving the fat in the bottom to brown the meat. If you have more than a couple of tablespoons, pour off the excess.

Cook Bacon

Cook Bacon

3)  Turn the heat up and brown the meat on all sides until beginning to crust. Transfer the meat to a platter and pour in the red wine, scraping the browned bits from the pan as it deglazes. Continue to cook until wine is reduced to about 3/4 cup.  Combine wine, meat, bacon, garlic, celery root and onions in the roasting pan.

Deglaze Pan

Deglaze Pan

4)  Cover the pan and cook at 250 for 2 hours.  Check occasionally to make sure the pan doesn’t become dry, adding water 1/4 cup at a time if needed.

5) Add the rest of the vegetables around the roast, and cook for an additional 45 minutes until all are tender.

Pot Roast Cooking

Pot Roast Cooking

6) Serve, spooning chunky juices over meat and veggies as desired.

Pot Roast Served

Pot Roast Served

New recipe, hot food, cool kitchen–life is good!

Have you done anything creative to deal with the heat?

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  1. I was wondering how you were going to cook pot roast without an oven or stove. You fooled us with the roaster outside! 🙂 Very clever!

  2. Great idea making the roast in the crock pot. Cuts down on the heat!

  3. I’ve been trying to come up with creative ways to get out of the kitchen too, Inger. The crock is one and a rotisserie is another!!! (I bought a new gas grill and attachment, first time in my life!) I made a pork roast the other night basted with a mixture of leftover coffee and wine, oh goodness. I hope to post about it next week.

    Oh listen to me rambling while I’m feasting my eyes on that most comforting of all meals. Your pot roast looks heavenly, if pot roasts can be described in such a manner that is. I bet it tasted delicious!!!

    Thanks for sharing…

    • Isn’t it hard having to choose between cooking and trying to keep the house cool? Your rotisserie comment reminds me that I have a leg of lamb left from last fall’s lamb that would be perfect to rotisserie outdoors! Do post about your pork roast–it sounds fabulous!

      • I’m absolutely dying to try a leg of lamb on the rotisserie, Inger. Perhaps, next week if Marion agrees:) I’m going to try and get the pork roast up too but it may not be for a while. Please share your leg of lamb with us, it sounds fabulous!!!

  4. Great job moving the roaster outdoors! I resist turning on our oven during these blazing days. Last year, my dh actually built me a stove and warming drawer outside which has been just awesome. And, by the way, my boys would die for that meal. I realized that I don’t make things like that for them and they enjoy it so much.

    • With the grass fed beef that I get now, I don’t even feel guilty serving a big red meat meal! Your “summer kitchen” sounds wonderful–what a great (hungry??) husband you have!

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