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Cold, overcast days absolutely scream for comfort food, don't you agree? That's why Ina Garten's Company Pot Roast is just the ticket when the temperatures take a dive and a steady winter drizzle sets in. My house doesn't have a fireplace, but give me a Dutch oven, a bunch of root veggies, and a nice cut of meat and I'll set the scene in no time—and you better believe I'll be calling on the Barefoot Contessa's best pot roast recipe.

Let's get one thing clear: This roast is not made in the slow cooker. Is it slow cooked? You betcha. But, set it and forget it, you cannot. It all starts with dousing the meat in flour, then searing it on every side, including the ends. The process will take a bit of time, but every minute will be repaid with abounding flavor when you dish it up a few hours later. The next thing you'll do is pile in a bunch of veggies. They'll be cooked down for about 15 minutes, at which time you'll add Cognac and red wine to the mix. Let it get all simmery, then throw in the rest of the good stuff like tomatoes, stock, herbs, a bouillon cube, seasoning, and that perfectly seared piece of meat. Finally, pop it in the oven.

Now the real magic happens.

Let the pot simmer away for a few hours until the meat is practically falling apart. When you gently touch the beef with your fork and it shreds away, you know you've hit the big time. It's going to take patience to get there but, oh my, is it going to smell good in the meantime. I stepped outside when I was about an hour into the cook time and was met by my neighbor who immediately wanted to know what the delicious smell coming from our house was all about. Now give me a topic I'm passionate about and I'll talk your ear off, which is how I almost over cooked my glorious Company Pot Roast. Almost.

Woman Cooking at Stove
Credit: Getty/Shestock

Just before serving, puree about half of the delicious sauce and veggies. When you add it back to the pot, it instantly makes the sauce smoother, silkier, and oh-so decadent. To really bring it over the top, Ina calls for simmering a small mixture of butter and flour just before plating. It'll help the gravy thicken to the perfect consistency. Serve it with mashed potatoes or rice, depending on the preferences of your crowd. Just make sure you have some sort of starchy side or bread to soak in all that goodness. You won't want to miss a drop.