Sauerbraten (German Soured Pot Roast) Recipe
Firstly stud the sirloin by pressing the whole cloves into the meat.
Peel and roughly chop the onion, carrot, celery and garlic cloves. Place the vegetables into a large bowl, mix in the vinegar and flat beer, along with a bouquet garni of fresh herbs. Place the studded piece of meat in the bowl and turn to coat in the marinade. The meat should be totally submerged in the marinade, if not add a little water to the liquid. Cover the bowl and place in the refrigerator to marinate for 2-4 days,turning the meat over twice each day.
Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F or gas mark 4). Remove the meat from the marinade and reserve the marinade for use later. Pull the cloves out of the meat and discard. Pat the meat dry with absorbent kitchen paper. Heat a deep large ovenproof casserole dish or saucepan and melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Brown the meat evenly on all sides in the dish - the browning is very important for developing the flavours in the meat. Once well browned remove the meat from the pan. In the same dish melt the remaining butter, add the flour and stir through. Cook on a low heat for around half a minute being careful not to burn the flour. Slowly add the marinade, including vegetables and bouquet garni with the beef stock. Add a little at a time stirring constantly. The mixture will thicken as you do this. Add a little salt and pepper and return the meat to the dish. Bring to the boil and place in the oven for 1½ to 2 hours, until the meat is tender.
Once cooked, remove the meat and set aside somewhere warm. Strain the gravy through a fine sieve, pressing the vegetables to get all the juices. If the gravy is still quite runny gently heat and reduce until you reach the desired consistency and flavour. Check the seasoning and add more salt and pepper if necessary.
To serve, slice the meat and arrange on a warmed platter with seasonal vegetables and the finished gravy.
(Serves 6 to 8)
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