5 Fabulous Beef Brisket Recipes
Slow-Cooked Beef brisket is the culinary equivalent to the musical slow jam. It takes the less hurried path that leads straight to love. Whether brisket is what’s on the menu for a laid-back family weekend dinner or a quintessential Passover meal, it’s moist, tender, and full of flavor. Which is all that beef can be.
You can’t rush brisket. In fact, slow-braising — cooking it covered at a low temperature with a spice rub or marinade, with plenty of moisture for hours — is the best way to love it tender. But our recipes below for wood-smoked brisket, or a quicker stuffed version, deliver, too.
Here’s what you may not know: Although all beef brisket comes from a steer’s breast and lower chest, there are two cuts, and getting to know the second, less well-known, is well worth your while. When you ask for brisket in the supermarket, chances are good that you’ll be offered the more lean “first,” or “flat” cut.
But next time, ask the butcher for the “second,” or “point” cut, which has more fat, and, hence, more flavor. Some cooks prepare the brisket with the second cut’s thick layer of fat left on and then, after refrigerating the beef after cooking, skim much of it off before reheating to serve.
That’s another beauty of the brisket. It begs to be made ahead (even three to five days before you plan to serve it). Simply refrigerate it, and let the flavors bloom. And always slice the brisket against the grain (cutting with the grain results in a tougher texture).
A simple rub of paprika, salt, and pepper, and a braising liquid containing red wine and tomato puree gives the beef brisket earthy flavor, complemented with cremini or button mushrooms and savory thyme.
For fans of a less-fatty yet enormously flavorful beef brisket, the “first cut” of the brisket is used in this recipe. It makes for a delicious one-pot meal with the inclusion of rutabaga, parsnips, and carrots. Plus, a little vermouth or white wine gives it depth.
Roasted fruits are a natural with beef brisket, but the idea of red seedless grapes comes as a gently sweet surprise. Ginger adds a bright note, and carrots and pearl onions add a complexity that takes the beef all over the flavor spectrum
If you love brisket but don’t have the time to marinate it or slow-cook it, you can whip up this recipe in just an hour and a half. A stuffing of pears and figs provide a mellow sweetnes, leeks and carrots bring a subtle earthiness, and toasted pecans and matzo give it plenty of texture.
Got a smoker, or a simple gas grill? Then put it to work with this luscious beef brisket rubbed with a blend of spices and brown sugar, then smoked over hickory or mesquite for five to six hours, until meltingly tender and wildly flavorful. It’s easy on the grill — you can make pouches of soaked wood chips out of aluminum foil.
Find out how easy it is to make a holiday beef brisket!