"There are only two ways of cooking beef -- rare or cooked to death. Rare beef requires good cuts from the rear quarter. Cooked-to-death beef should be made from the front quarter. Don't buy too good a cut for a pot roast, or it won't hold up."
5 pounds beef, suitable for braising
Olive oil to cover bottom of pan
8 medium onions
1 stalk celery
6 garlic cloves
30 peppercorns, cracked
12 ounces beer
Bouquet garni to taste
2 bay leaves
1/3 cup currant jelly
1 teaspoon meat glaze (Bovril Broth and Seasoning Base)
Brown meat in hot oil over high heat until all sides are brown. Cut onions, carrot, celery, and garlic into chunks. Remove meat from pan and add the vegetables. Reduce the heat and cook the vegetables until they are soft. Return the meat to the pan with the vegetable mixture; add cracked peppercorns, beer, bouquet garni, bay leaves, currant jelly, and meat glaze, and bring to a slow simmer. Continue braising until the meat is tender (2 to 3 hours). Remove the meat from the pan, and strain and degrease the liquid; there should be about 3 cups (boil liquid down to 3 cups if necessary). Adjust the seasoning of the liquid with salt, vinegar, and/or sugar to taste. Mix part of the liquid with cornstarch and whisk it into the rest of the liquid to make a glistening sauce. Slice meat and arrange on a platter. Spoon a little sauce over the meat, sprinkle with parsley, and serve with the remaining sauce. This can be prepared in advance up to the sauce thickening and can be refrigerated or frozen. Reheat meat in the liquid and then proceed with the thickening process.
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