Hot Beef Pitas

Making one of your husband's favorite childhood recipes is incredibly stressful.  Can I live up to my mother-in-law's hot beef pitas that sound like they are nothing short of magical? I've avoided making these for nearly 2 years for that very reason: fear. Ok, I am exaggerating a little, but my dad STILL says 'my mother's used to be so creamy' every time my mom makes mashed potatoes. Which is pretty much every week.  Trying to recreate the fond and loving memories from your mother-in-law's kitchen is a lot to live up to. 

So, I finally decided to attempt the hot beef pitas. But I added beer. Why? Because then if they didn't turn out I could say, 'it must have been the beer.' And it wouldn't be my overall cooking skill or magical cooking hand (or lack thereof).

Anyway. These sandwiches? Awesome. The beef is so flavorful yet very simple...the idea to put them in a pita? Genius. Pure genius. Thank you Jane Braley.

Recipe:
I used rump roast for these sandwiches, but I would recommend either that or chuck roast. I think chuck roast might be a little cheaper. Both meats will cook down enough to shred quite easily.
Preheat the oven to 350.  Pat the meat dry with a paper towel, and flour all sides (you can skip this if cooking GF).  Heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a large dutch oven, over medium-high heat. Place the meat in the pot, and brown all sides. This should take 3-4 minutes per side.

Reduce the heat to medium. Pour in about 3 cups beef broth, beer, and onion soup mix. Mix together. Pour in more beef broth if necessary, until it nearly covers the meat.
Stir in the sugar. This was another minor modification...not necessary but I wanted to sweeten it up a bit.

Place the lid on the dutch oven, and slow roast in the oven for about 4 hours. You can check after about 3.5...you want the meat to shred easily with a fork.

When the meat can be easily shredded, turn off the heat. Shred the entire roast with a fork (or 2). We left it in the sauce for serving, but you could also remove the meat to another bowl to make it a little easier. You will still want to pour a little of the sauce in the sandwich, it is so delicious. Meanwhile, toast the pitas! This is not an opinion, this is a fact.

Then, stuff away. Pitas are so fun! We made some with cheddar cheese.
And some with caramelized onions and sour cream.
You could also serve the beef on regular hamburger buns, on tortillas, over nachos...oh the opportunities here are endless. Our dinner was complete with Corn Casserole and Apple and Goat Cheese Salad.

There are several football Sundays left in the season - make these if you would like to become the lady (or man) with the great hot beef recipe.

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