Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Tried and true

Every good cook has a few recipes that they rely on: that "famous" requested dish for parties, your mom's favorite cake recipe, or something special that can be whipped up at a moment's notice if company accidentally shows up. Well, the Food Allergy Queen recommends that everyone with food allergies seek out one or two reliable recipes that are easy to make and versatile, so that there's less chance of getting stuck with absolutely nothing to eat. And you can come up with new ways to use the recipe the more times you make it!

One of my tried and true recipes is for beef brisket. This is an inexpensive cut of meat that can be really flavorful and tender when cooked well. And it's low maintenance as well...bonus! Warning, this takes three hours in the oven, but it's three hours that you can be doing your laundry or organizing your sock drawer. I eat this brisket lots of different ways: hot as an entree, cold in salads, cut up for omelettes, sliced in pasta, you get the idea. I frequently use a smaller-sized brisket piece and cut the ingredients down accordingly...however, don't cut down the cook time too much, the low and slow method is what makes this tender and delicious. People are jealous when I bring this to work for lunch because it smells so good!

Nach Waxman's Brisket
From The New Basics Cookbook, Rosso & Lukins (the Silver Palate ladies)

1 first-cut brisket (5-6 pounds), grass-fed if you can get it
1-2 tsp flour (if you can have it, if not skip it)
coursely ground black pepper to taste
1/4 c. vegetable oil
8 onions, thickly sliced and separated into rings
2 Tbsp. tomato paste (I substitute with raspberry jam and a little smoked paprika)
1 1/2 tsp. coarse or Kosher salt
2 cloves garlic (I omit for allergy reasons)
1 carrot, peeled (ditto)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Trim excess fat, dust lightly with flour and pepper, both sides.
3. Heat oil in heavy flameproof casserole (I use my Lodge cast iron), add brisket and brown over medium heat until there are some crisp spots on the meat. Transfer to a platter.
4. Add onions to still medium-heat pan, cook until softened and browned, 10-15 min. Take off heat.
5. Place brisket on top of bed of onions still in the pan, capturing any juices that may have separated, and spread tomato paste (raspberry jam) over top of brisket. Sprinkle with pepper and salt. Add garlic and carrot, and cover tightly with lid or foil. Bake for 1 1/2 hours.
6. Remove brisket and onto carving board. Slice into 1/4" thick slices, then return to the casserole with the slices at a slight angle. Cover, and cook until meat is fork-tender, about 1 1/2- 2 hours longer.

I like to make this on a Sunday afternoon and have it available to use all during the week.


Allergic Girl® said...

i love brisket. i hadnt thought of it as a go to dish since around here we only make during the jewish holidays. but why not!

ByTheBay said...

Oh yum! I adore brisket.