Thursday, 10 April 2014

The Perfect Slow Roast Brisket

This is a comfort dish I like to serve on a cold wet evening
when I have had time to lovingly prepare the brisket in the afternoon
and with the scent of the meat cooking in the oven mixing
 with the burning wood fire I can curl up, ignore the weather outside & read a good book with maybe a glass (or two) of wine.

Brisket is one of the cheapest beef cuts coming from the chest
of the beast. It is full of flavour but needs to be cooked at
a low temperature for a long time to break down the tough 
connective tissues within the meat. If you don't cook it long enough
the joint will be tough & chewy however, if you cook it for too
long it can be dry. In my experience it's better to over cook this one than under - it's easier to salvage with the gravy or sauce than it is to chew an under cooked brisket.

So allow plenty of time to cook and be patient it's well worth it.

2-2.5kg piece rolled beef brisket, tied with string

4-5 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

A good handful of thyme sprigs
a good splurge of olive oil (about 2 to 3 tablespoons)
5 small onions or shallots, peeled
a handful of mushrooms sliced
glass of red wine
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6.
(Serves 4-6)

 Put the tied brisket in a large roasting tin and tuck the garlic and thyme inside and under it. Massage the oil all over the meat, then season well. 

Roast for 30 minutes, then reduce the heat to 140°C/gas 1, cover the meat with foil and return it to the oven for 4 hours, basting from time to time.

 Add the onions and turn them in the meat juices. Turn the oven up to 160°C/gas 3 and cook, uncovered, for a further hour, until the joint has crisped up.

Pour off the juices into a separate pan and put over a high heat add the wine and the sliced mushrooms and reduce the sauce to make a pouring gravy. Taste & season accordingly.

I have been known to add either a crushed clove of garlic, a teaspoon of horseradish or mustard and also some red current jelly to ring the changes to the gravy.

 Serve the beef in thick slices, with the gravy spooned over the meat.

We served ours with Buttered & Peppered Cabbage and Mashed Potatoes - perfect.

Printable Recipe