Moving on. We participated in our first ever Seder meal this past weekend, and I was put in charge of the meat. I spent a few brief hours considering roasting lamb until I remembered that large pieces of meat still often intimidate me and that I’d be cooking for other people (some of whom I didn’t know) and that the meat had to be warmed and done and sliced at a very specific time in the evening. Lamb was out.
I actually made this brisket last year, and it was delicious and tender like a brisket should be, but this baby was still inside me and protested against the brisket with a heartburn attack so strong that I almost wasn’t able to enjoy any of the leftovers.
Not so this year, my friends, not so. I made twelve pounds of this brisket, and after about 30 minutes of prep time, I popped all of that meat in a couple of crockpots overnight, and spent the night waking up periodically to the overwhelming aroma of meat spreading through our house, getting hungrier and hungrier each time I woke up.
I may or may not have eaten several forkfuls of this with my toast the next morning.
Done in the crockpot, this brisket came out baby-teeth tender with a little bit of sweetness from brown sugar and lightly caramelized onions, some kick from chili sauce, cayenne, and paprika, as well as every other flavor you can think of with oregano, thyme, garlic, and more. And the best part is, you can make this brisket a day ahead of time because it actually does best when it has several hours to rest before serving…which means it just needs a 30-minute reheat in the oven before your friends and family devour it happily. This brisket seriously has a lot going for it (including some dreamy leftover options coming your way soon).
Whether you’re Sedering this year, or looking for a break from your regular Easter ham, this brisket should be in your life.
(recipe curated from Smitten Kitchen )
(yields 8-10 servings)
This tender brisket comes together quickly with about 30 minutes of prep time and 10 hours in the crockpot. You can make it a day ahead of time and reheat it just before serving. I didn't change one thing from the original recipe; it was perfect as is!
3 large onions, sliced
3 tbsp. vegetable oil
6 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
1 tsp. paprika
2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/8 to 1/4 tsp. cayenne (adjust to your heat preference; I used 1/8)
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
2 c. beef stock (unsalted or low salt)
1 c. ketchup
1 c. chili sauce* (I used Heinz - pretty mild)
1 c. brown sugar
8 to 10 lb. brisket
Prepare the sauce:
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat and sauté onions in vegetable oil, stirring occasionally, until caramelized and most of liquid has evaporated, about 15 minutes. Add halved garlic cloves and saute for 3 minutes more. Stir in spices and seasoning (paprika, salt, garlic and onion powders, black pepper, cayenne, oregano and thyme) and cook for 2 minutes. Set aside.
In a large bowl, stir together the beef stock, ketchup, chili sauce and brown sugar.
To Cook the Brisket:
Lightly grease crockpot. Place brisket in a crockpot (I had to cut my brisket cut in half and stack it to get it to fit), spread onion mixture over the top, then pour sauce mixture over the entire dish. Cover with the lid and cook it on LOW for 10 hours. (I did this overnight.) Do your best to lift the lid up as little as possible, though if you have a section of the meat sticking out of the sauce, rotate it under the sauce for at least a few hours of the cooking time.)
Rest the Brisket:
When the brisket is cooked but still hot, use a spoon to scrape off any large fat deposits adhered to the top and bottom of the brisket. (This part is easiest to do when hot. The sauce will be de-fatted after it has chilled.)
Transfer the brisket and all of its sauce to a baking dish. Chill entire dish in the fridge for several hours and up to one day; this resting time will significantly enhance the flavor and texture of the meat (don't be tempted to skip this step; just do it!)
An hour before you’re ready to serve it:
Preheat your oven to 300°F, and remove the dish from the fridge. Remove all of the fat that has solidified on top with a slotted spoon for a less oily finish.
Carefully remove the meat from its sauce and place on a large cutting board. Cut the brisket into 1/2-inch slices.
(Optional: you could run your sauce through a food processor for a smoother sauce; I didn't.)
Carefully place the sliced meat (moving it in large sections with a spatula helps keep it together) back into the sauce and spoon the sauce over the meat. Replace the lid or cover the dish tightly with foil and reheat in the oven until it is bubbling at the edges — this usually takes up to to 30 minutes.