There is a local local steak house that used to sell an awesome mushroom steak sauce. It had a nice mushroom flavor and really enhanced everything you put it on. I also loved to use it in cooking, especially pot roast. Unfortunately, they stopped making it and I went without for ages. I never really knew what went into that sauce, but always suspected it was based on a dark soy sauce. Fast forward a few years to the summer of 2010. I was in Denver and checking out an Oriental grocery store when I stumbled across something that looked promising, a mushroom flavored soy sauce. I bought a bottle just to see if it might be close to the mushroom flavored steak sauce. It turned out even better! This stuff if awesome in cooking Chinese foods, but my favorite use is for flavoring meats and gravies.
For example, this weekend I made a pot roast. I haven't had one in ages, and the weather this weekend made me want something homey and comforting. I saw a nice chuck roast at the store so bought it. It weighed about 3.7 pounds, fairly lean and very pretty. It cooked up tender and tasty, with killer brown gravy. Here's how I did it:
3-4 pound chuck roast, not too fatty or with excess fat trimmed off
mushroom soy sauce (or regular soy sauce if you don't have the mushroom flavored stuff)
Mrs. Dash to taste
1 1/2 cups liquid (water, broth, tomato juice, V-8 juice, wine, you name it)
Rub the mushroom soy sauce all over the roast, dust with Mrs. Dash and place it in a dutch oven or roaster. Add your choice of liquid to the bottom of the pan (I used chicken broth). Cover tightly and put in a preheated oven at 350 degrees. Cook for 3 hours, checked after an hour and a half to two hours to see that it hasn't cooked dry. If it is dry, you can add just a bit more liquid. If you like, you can add peeled and quartered onions and potatoes, with peeled carrots during the last hour of cooking. When it is done, remove to a serving platter, cover and set aside while making the gravy. Pour off any fat in the bottom of the pan and add 2 cups of your desired liquid to the roasting pan and stir to dissolve any browned bits and fond on the bottom of the pan. In another sauce pan, heat three tbsp. of either the drippings from the bottom of the pan or some oil. Add three tbsp. flour and cook until the flour begins to brown a bit. Add the liquid from the roasting pan and cook, stirring constantly until thickened. Allow to simmer at least one minute. Then enjoy!
With my pot roast and gravy, I served mashed potatoes (Aaron and I are both fiends for mashed potatoes and gravy), and maple glazed carrots. For dessert I made an apple crisp.