I'm braising a 3.5lb chuck roast tomorrow after a poor pot roast experience last week. I'm doing it stove-top in a 7qt. dutch oven. To prepare, I cut small slits into the roast which I then stuffed small garlic slices into, patted the roast down with salt, pepper, and rosemary, and placed the roast in a marinade mixture of balsamic vinegar, liquid smoke. molasses, minced garlic, and some oregano. I have some potatoes, red and yellow onion, carrots, celery, and mushrooms that I plan to add to the mix tomorrow.
That said, here's what I'm curious about:
The braising liquid... What are some good suggestions here and in what proportion? I have beer, red wine, beef broth, worchestershire, basamic vinegar, liquid smoke, and tomato puree. What are some good combos with these and other ingredients?
The veggies... I'm planning on braising at the lowest temp possible and allowing plenty of time for the roast to tenderize. When should I add the different veggies?
The browning... I'm planning on browning the roast in the dutch oven in some olive oil. Is olive oil the way to go, and for how long should I brown? One sidenote here, I have noticed a few suggestions to flour the roast prior to browning... What are the effects of this?
One final question... I have also read a few reccommendations to cut the roast into smaller pieces and add back to the braising liquid when close to done. Are there any disadvantages to this?
Thanks for the help!