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 Wine-Braised Beef Brisket

-from Aunt Rose

Brisket is a cut of meat from the breast or lower chest of beef or veal. This is a tough cut of meat that requires a long cooking time in liquid, but it has a ton of flavor. It usually is sold with a "fat cap" attached, which helps to keep the meat from drying during the prolonged cooking necessary to break down the connective tissue in the meat. You'll want to retain that fat!

This recipe calls for roasting in an oven, but it can also be cooked on the stovetop over low heat as a pot roast or in a slow cooker. Oh, and use a good wine, one that you wouldn't mind drinking. It does make a difference!


INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 to 5 pound beef brisket
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 5-6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 3 large white or yellow onions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup good red wine
  • 2 Cups beef stock
  • 2- 3 large carrots, cut in 1 1/2 inch pieces

DIRECTIONS:

On the side of the brisket that has a layer of fat, score the fat diagonally with a sharp knife about 3/4-inch apart. Repeat in the other direction, forming diamond shapes. Be careful to sllice through the fat only, not the beef.

Salt the brisket well on both sides and let it sit at room temperature for about half an hour. Pat dry.

Mix thyme and black pepper in a small bowl and rub the mixture over both sides of brisket.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a heavy, oven-proof pan or Dutch oven until oil shimmers but does not smoke. Place brisket in the hot oil and brown on both sides, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove brisket from pan and set aside.

Add the chopped onions to the pot and increase the heat to high. Sprinkle a little salt on the onions. Sauté, stirring often, until the onions are lightly browned, 5-8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook 1-2 more minutes; you don't want the garlic to brown, it tastes bitter if it burns.

Scoot the onions and garlic to the sides of the pan and nestle the brisket in the center; add the sprig of rosemary, the broth, tomato sauce and wine and bring it to a boil on the stovetop. Then cover the pot and put it in the preheated oven. Cook for 3 hours, carefully flipping the brisket every hour so it cooks evenly.

After 3 hours, add the carrots and cook another hour or until carrots are done and brisket is falling apart tender. Take the pot out of the oven, pull out and discard the rosemary sprig and bay leaves, and carefully remove the brisket to a cutting board. Cover it with foil and let it rest for at least 20 minutes. Slice the brisket across the grain and serve with the onions, carrots and gravy or au jus.

Serves 8 - 12

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