Papa’s handwriting and happy memories {orange-spice pot roast}

It was time to pull out the crockpot.  It’s been a while.  How I’ve missed it!  The recipe I used for tonight’s dinner was written down by Papa.  This means that I had a lot of deciphering to do in order to make dinner!  But it also brought back a lot of memories of Papa.  Funny how seeing something as simple as someone’s handwriting can do that to you.


cinnamon & cloves

I remember receiving notes and cards in the mail from Mema and Papa growing up.  They would each write a sweet message to me and would usually include a dollar or two.  I was usually able to read Mema’s note but my mom always had to read Papa’s message to me – until I got older and figured out his handwriting for myself.  I honestly love his handwriting, messy as it is!  It’s like a secret code only those who know him well can decipher!


So tonight’s dinner was in memory of Papa!  Pot Roast cooked with potatoes & turnips and served with fresh green beans and quinoa.  I don’t know about his early years but I do know that as he got older he became more interested in cooking.  Whenever we would visit, Papa would poach eggs, cook burn some bacon and serve it with whole wheat toast and fresh fruit.  I remember those breakfasts so well!  I think of Papa every time I cook bacon.  I still prefer my bacon a little on the burnt side!

orange-spice pot roast

This recipe is delicious!  You can definitely taste the cinnamon and cloves so if you aren’t a huge fan, then this recipe might not be for you.  Or maybe cut down the amounts you use.   I did make one substitution.  I am the only one in my household that will even touch a sweet potato.  I love them but my family does not.  So I used small red potatoes instead.  They were great!

Orange-Spice Pot Roast

yield: 6 servings

2 lbs. boneless beef chuck pot roast

non-stick cooking spray

3 inch stick cinnamon, broken

6 whole cloves

100% cheesecloth

1/3 c. frozen orange juice concentrate

3 medium sweet potatoes, quartered (or 3 c. small red potatoes)

1 lb. turnips, cut into 1 inch pieces

1/2 tsp. salt

1 medium onion, sliced into rings

1/4 c. light corn syrup

3 tsp. quick cooking tapioca

Cut meat to fit crockpot if necessary.  Spray a large skillet with non-stick cooking spray. Heat skillet over medium-high heat.  Brown roast on all sides.

Wrap cinnamon and cloves in 100% cheesecloth.  Place in crockpot.  Add sweet potatoes, turnips, and onion to crockpot.  Sprinkle tapioca over the vegetables.

In a small bowl, stir together orange juice, corn syrup, & salt.  Pour over the vegetables. Place roast on top of the vegetables.  Cover and cook on low heat setting for 10 to 12 hours or high heat setting for 5 to 6 hours.  When done, transfer roast to serving platter. Discard spice bag.  Serve cooking juices with the meat.



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