After months of perfecting my shabbos brisket I’ve finally got the winning dish. Marinated in spices, garlic and herbs overnight, this wine braised hunk of beef finishes with notes of chili. A cross between the BBQ versions of the American south and the more refined elegance displayed during Jewish holidays, this hearty dish is perfect for cold wintery nights. Served with roasted asparagus (roast in the oven with olive olive, salt, pepper and 1 crushed clove of garlic for 12-15 min) and mashed potatoes, the braising liquid is reduced down to create a gravy packed with loads of flavour. Because the meat soaks up the liquids, it’s even better the next day – just reserve in the sauce for delicious challah sandwiches, or, try this smart pulled brisket canapé for a dinner party.
5 lbs/ 2.25 kg beef brisket
2 qts/ 2 litres beef stock, plus extra water
8 garlic cloves, crushed with the heel of a knife
1 carrot, cut into chunks
1 red onion, large dice
2 celery sticks, cut into chunks
3 shallots, cut into chunks
1 leek, white part only, cut into chunks
2 bay leaves
1 bottle red wine
6 sprigs flat leaf parsley
3 sprigs fresh thyme
2 tbl tomato paste
1 tbl chipotle chili paste
2 tbl paprika
2 tbl all-spice
1 tbl ground cumin
1 tsp ground cloves
Salt and pepper
- Rub the brisket with ground pepper 1 tbl ea of paprika and all-spice and olive oil. Stud with 4 garlic cloves, 3 sprigs of parsley and 1 sprig of thyme. Allow to marinate for at least 4 hours or overnight in the fridge.
- Preheat the oven to 350° F/ 180 C. Take the brisket out of the fridge and remove the garlic and herbs. Season with salt and sear all all around in a dutch oven with butter on medium-high heat – you want a nice golden-brown colour all over. Meanwhile, pour the red wine into a small saucepan over medium heat – allow to reduce to half its volume (approx. 15-20 min).
- Remove the beef from the dutch oven and set aside on a plate. Pour out the fat from the dutch oven and heat up some olive oil in it with the garlic cloves in order to infuse the flavour.
- Add the vegetables and cook until they just begin to gain colour (approx 3-4 min). Add the tomato paste, all of the parsley and thyme (even the sprigs used to marinate the meat), and the bay leaf. Allow to cook for a further 1-2 minutes.
- Return the browned brisket to the dutch oven and add in the reduced wine, beef stock and spices. If there isn’t enough liquid to cover the brisket, add enough water so that the meat is completely submerged.
- Bring the liquid to a simmer and then cover and place in the oven. Cook until fork tender (at least 3-4 hours).
- When the meat is finished, remove it from the liquid – place on a heated platter and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm. Strain the liquid into a medium saucepan. Over medium heat, let it reduce down until it thickens (approx 15-20 min). Taste and adjust the seasonings.
- Cut the meat across the grain and serve with mashed potatoes, roasted asparagus and the gravy spooned on top.