Oh, my Meme Koletar made the best best beef veggie soup. The family would pile in & gobble it up & she'd fill up containers for everyone to some home. I still make a ton like Meme did, although I don't have near the family size she did to feed! But, this freezes well & is a favorite among everyone. Takes a few steps -- well worth it. This is a low & slow meal to make--cannot be rushed. Also, use more beef broth & less tomatoes, if you want less of a tomato base. I prefer to cook this all day & then serve as the next day's meal. Serve w/ some crusty Italian bread for dipping...oh yum.
1For the Pot Roast (I am told this is a Hungarian method): Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Get a Dutch Oven hot on the stove-- NO oil or water in the pot. Just get it to high heat. Then, toss your chuck roast in there (UNSALTED!). Sprinkle with some fresh ground black pepper. Sear one side for about 2-3 minutes, turn over to other side with a big fork & sear another 2-3 minutes. It may stick a bit, don't worry about it & you may want to turn your vent on or open your windows, so your smoke alarm doesn't go off. :) Turn off heat & remove pot. Then bake in oven, covered with lid or foil for 2 hours (turning over once.). Do not add water, salt, or anything to the roast! After 2 hours, turn oven off & let roast sit for 30 minutes in oven. When you get the roast out, you will be amazed at all the beef broth in the pan! I always do this the day before I make my soup. Then I wrap the roast in foil & refrigerate it overnight & save the broth (make sure to scrape all those yummy brown bits out of the pan). The next day, skim any fat off the broth easily. Now we're ready to make the soup!
2Get your beef broth (from the roast) in a large stockpot & begin to simmer. This is when I add the canned tomatoes, V8, beef stock, a bay leaf, garlic, about 1 TBS of sugar, and some black pepper. Add a can of water, using one of the tomato cans & the canned beef broth. Give that a stir & then crank the heat up a bit. Add the onions, raw carrots & celery stalks. Continue to cook on a medium heat, stirring occasionally so it doesn't burn.
3Meanwhile, take your roast out of the fridge. Trim as much fat as possible from it. I like to smother it in worcestershire sauce & some Montreal steak seasoning. Let that sit for a few minutes, then add to the soup, sliced in large hunks. Put heat on simmer & just let this baby cook up for a few hours. If you have a large crockpot, you can transfer it to there, if you have room. I never do, as I like playing & tasting with the soup as it's cooking. :)
4Take out your frozen mixed veggies & let them start to thaw out in a strainer. After about 2.5 hours, I take the celery stalk out of the soup. Add cabbage & cook for another hour or two. I keep adding black pepper & stirring to this dish.
5When the beef is starting to get tender (I just keep tearing it in smaller pieces w/ a spoon, until I can feel it's getting nice & tender) and the carrots are softened, add the thawed frozen veggies. Simmer for at least another hour, probably more, until your beef is fork tender. Taste this & adjust seasonings to suit your taste buds. I never add salt to this.
6Serve in a big bowl w/ hard crust bread or rolls. HEAVEN! I honestly eat like 4-5 bowls of this when I make it. I just leave the pot on the stove & keep going back for more. Tastes just as good the next day & the next.