October 1, 2012 • ariel
Brisket + Kugel: Break Fast of Champions
“Oy the brisket’s on sale on Fresh Direct.”
Sometimes I catch myself saying these things and I have to look in the mirror to check and see if i’m greying/turning into one of those people from Shit Jewish Mothers Say.
But the day before Yom Kippur, the brisket was, in fact, on sale on Fresh Direct. So, like any good Jew, I bought five pounds (and saved a bundle!).
- 5 large garlic cloves, smashed
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary, needles striped from the stem and chopped
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 (5 pound) beef brisket
- Coarsely ground black pepper
- 4 large carrots, cut in 3-inch chunks
- 3 celery stalks, cut in 3-inch chunks
- 4 large red onions, halved
- 2½ cups dry red wine
- 1 (16-ounce) can San Marzano tomatoes
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon corn starch (for gravy)
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Mince garlic and ½ teaspoon of the salt together with the flat-side of a knife into a paste. Add rosemary and continue to mash until incorporated. Put the garlic-rosemary mixture in a small bowl and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil; stir to combine.
- Season both sides of the brisket with a fair amount of kosher salt (it should look like snow!) and ground black pepper. Place a large Dutch oven over medium-high flame and coat with the remaining olive oil. Put the brisket in the roasting pan and sear to form a nice brown crust on both sides (5 minutes each side). Cover brisket with vegetables and crushed tomatoes and pour the rosemary paste over the whole thing. Add the wine and bay leaves. Put a top on the pot and place carefully in the oven–> if you’re using a medium Dutch oven like I was, place the pot on top of a cookie sheet so that in case anything boils over, it won’t cause a dreaded oven fire.
- Bake for about five hours. By this time, it’s basically impossible to not have things fall apart (in the best sense).
- When the brisket is finished, put it on a back burner of your stove and ladle several ladlefulls into a small saucepan. Whisk in the cornstarch (whisk vigorously so there are no lumps) and then let the gravy simmer until thickened (up to ten minutes).
At this point, you can take the brisket out of the sauce/veg and slice. Or you can do what I did and place the whole pot on the table, ladle out some of the veg and just let people pull it apart.
Yes, I also made kugel.
I general am not a huge fan of kugel. Maybe it’s the shameful amounts of dairy. Maybe it’s the abundance of raisins that are not covered in chocolate (as they should be). Maybe it’s just that “noodle pie” just sounds sort of gross.
But with my grandmother’s recipe and a few tweaks, I think I found a perfect kugel-for-haters. Sweet and crisp on top, creamy and savory on bottom. And the corners, oh the corners are the best part—crisp, buttery, chewy. Fight for them.
- 3/4 pound cooked noodles
- 6 eggs
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 6 tablespoons melted butter + 1 stick for topping, small chunks
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 3/4 cup milk
- 1 pound cottage cheese
- 1/2 pound cream cheese
- 1 teaspoon salt
- two cups Corn Flakes
- Half cup dark brown sugar
Well there you have it, the break fast of champions. And to be honest, it wasn’t that hard. If I can do it while fasting (torturous), you can do it, too.
Oh, and if you see that brisket is ever on sale again, do let me know.
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