If a recipe has been shared over a million times on Pinterest and written about in the New York Times, then it must be a winner, and this one is. No question about it, this one is a keeper and for good reasons...it's dang delicious. Before you read the recipe though, please put away any preconceived notions you might have for using those little packages of dressing mix filled with monosodium-glutamate and other ingredients that make one glow in the dark. I don't like using those things, not because I'm a purist - banish the thought! But because I never have them on hand in my pantry and if a recipe calls for them then it means a trip to the store...see, not a purist, just lazy. Now, about this recipe...it is the original recipe of a lady in Mississippi named Robin Chapman. She made it for her family and friends all the time. One day she made it for a friend, who later called and asked her if she could put the recipe in her church cookbook...and that's where it started to get a little traction. The friend's niece wrote about it on her blog and little by little people started reposting...but very slowly at first, until Pinterest arrived on the scene and then it just exploded. The New York Times became interested when the recipe hit the million mark for pins and they did the research and went from pin to pin until they discovered who originated the recipe. So I ask you, can 1 million people be wrong?? Well, yes, if you're talking about the election...but not if you're talking about this roast!
The New York Times doesn't like to use pre-packaged anything so naturally when they saw the recipe they were skeptical...but brave foodies that they are, they donned their aprons, made the recipe as written and declared it spectacular! And then, they did what they always do, they rewrote the recipe so it could be made without pre-packaged dressings and declared it equally as good! You can find their recipe here.
As luck would have it, right after I read about Robin's recipe on the NYT webpage, I turned on my TV to Food Network and the show, The Kitchen, and none other than Robin Chapman was on the show!!! Robin was talking about her roast recipe and it's rise to fame - what a coincidence, no?! Hearing her describe how she made her roast was a bit different from the written recipe and the NYT version - surprise, surprise, she doesn't measure, she just pours and tosses things in and calls it good...like most great home cooks!
Here's the best thing about this recipe - it's quick and easy. I decided to take the advice of the NYT and I seared my roast on all sides first, but Robin just plunks hers down in the Crock-Pot unseared. That's the only change I made to the original recipe - and I do think it makes a difference. This is the most delicious pot roast we have had and I can see why it's still burning up the internet...make this one kids, it's worthy of 5 Dangs on the ol' Meter...it's dang, dang, dang, dang, dang finger lickin' good!
Mississippi Pot Roast - Original Recipe from Robin Chapman
1 pot roast, 3 to 4 lbs., (you can use a chuck roast, top or bottom round or sirloin)
1/4 cup flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons pepper
3 tablespoons oil, canola or vegetable
1 package Ranch Dressing Mix
1 package Au Jus mix
1 jar Peperoncini (I used about half of a 16 oz. jar, including half of the juice. Robin said she often uses the entire jar, so put in what you like)
1 stick butter (a lot of blogs and the Times used less butter but Robin said she always uses one stick...so who am I to argue?!)
Put roast onto cutting board. Sprinkle with salt and pepper on all sides. Sprinkle with flour and then rub flour into roast, on all sides. In a large skillet, heat oil until hot, then add roast and sear on all sides, about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove roast to Crock-Pot, set on low heat. Sprinkle Ranch dressing packet on top of roast. Sprinkle Au Jus mix on top of Ranch dressing. Put Peperoncini on top of roast, along with juice from jar. Slice butter into chunks and put on top of roast. Cover with lid and let cook on low for 6 to 8 hours - roast is done when it can be easily shredded with a fork. Serve hot with juice over egg noodles, rice or mashed potatoes. Used any left over roast in sandwiches (melt Provolone on top, so good!) Serves 6.