Archive for the 'Brisket' Category

05
Apr
11

An Unusually Delicious Brisket


Growing up in Uruguay, brisket (pecho) was a staple at every major festive occasion in my parents’ home and my mother’s brisket was served at least once, usually twice, during the sedorim. Aah, my mother’s brisket filled the house with its aroma, I remember the anticipation with which I waited to have itagain and again… Over the years I tried to find different versions of this old favorite and found many succulent variations, but last night’s version served at Lévana’s cooking demo far outshines most! Here she adapted her famous brisket to Passover by changing her deservedly famous recipe. She used honey instead of the usual molasses and brandy instead of bourbon Lévana has graciously agreed to share her recipe, notice the unusual ingredients:

Brisket in Coffee Brandy Sauce

Ingredients

  • 2 large onions, sliced very thin
  • 1 brisket. 6 to 7 pounds, first cut. Rinsed and patted thoroughly dry
  • 3 tablespoons instant coffee powder, decaf OK, mixed with 2 cups warm water
  • 1/3 cup brandy
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • ¼ cup vinegar
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon ground pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Scatter the onions in a pan just large enough to fit the meat.
  3. Place the brisket on top of the onions.
  4. Combine all remaining ingredients in a bowl, and pour the mixture evenly over the meat. Cover tightly with foil, and bake 2 hours.
  5. Turn the brisket over, and bake uncovered 1 more hour.
  6. Transfer the brisket to a cutting board and wait about 10 minutes before slicing.
  7. Meanwhile strain the cooking liquids into a small sauce pan, pressing hard on the solids (and discarding them), and reduce on a high flame to about 2 ½ cups. Let the brisket cool slightly.
  8. Slice thin against the grain. In places where the brisket is very long, cut across first before slicing. Pour the gravy on top.

Enjoy, gentle reader, enjoy! I most certainly did and will again.

CS

06
Dec
10

Jack’s Gourmet – Part 1


Of the delicious products (new and old) I got to taste at this year’s Kosherfest, Jack’s Gourmet sausages rank among the best. With no fillers, no by-products and no artificial flavors their natural goodness makes them a superb choice for a cold winter eve… or any other occasion.

Jack’s Gourmet, the company is the brainchild of two partners. Chef Jack Silberstein and Dr. Alan Broner.

Chef Jack Silberstein, Dr. Alan Broner

Chef Jack graduated  from the Culinary Institute of America (America’s foremost culinary school) in Hyde Park, NY, in 2007. He worked as a private chef aboard a yacht and is a respected consultant with the meat industry. Dr. Broner is a dentist with a popular private practice as well as a professor of dentistry. Dr. Broner has a long time interest in cooking and fine cuisine having attended many courses and cooking demos both in Manhattan (many at the De Gustibus School School of Good Taste) and in Brooklyn. It was, in fact, at one such course given in Brooklyn (by Chef Jack) that the two partners met.

Noting the lack of anything resembling good tasting sausages in the kosher world, they set out to produce them. I can attest they’ve succeeded and deliciously so!!! Not only were they the most popular stop at Kosherfest 2010, but every time I stopped by by I saw most of the celebrity chefs standing in line waiting to get another bite.

Their sausages come in 5 varieties:

  • Mexican Style Chorizo
  • Boereworks (South African style)
  • Sweet Italian
  • Hot Italian
  • Cured Bratwurst

They also produce the best tasting, most aromatic, 1st Cut Pastrami and 1st Cut Corned Beef Brisket, I ever had.

Jack's Gourmet mouthwatering selections

I picked up all these selections last Thursday. After tasting the superb pastrami and corned beef I started that evening’s dinner with rolls made with corned beef, pastrami and bratwurst…

truly succulent!

On Shabbos, I used the Cured Bratwurst as one of the three types of meat (pastrami deckel and cheek were the other two) I put in cholent. The taste, the aroma, were incredibly enhanced. It was one of my most successful experiments and probably the best cholent I ever made.

Well, gentle reader, I guess I’ll have to come back and tell you about the rest of the flavors…

CS

05
Jul
10

Saddle-up for Some Fine Fixins’ at Smokey Joe’s!


You don’t have to be a Texas long-horn to enjoy this round-up of superbly smoked and southern rustic Tex Mex cuisine at Smokey Joe’s (494 Cedar Lane; Teaneck, NJ. 07666; Telephone: 201.836.7427).  Décor is sun-burnt orange against ranch-rawhide woodsy panels; Marlboro manly man and stallion photos adorning the walls. Brown butcher block paper covers tables set with colorful southwestern china (don’t forget to ask Joe for doodling crayons).

A partial view of the dining area

Joe, the owner, looked for a unique niche in the market and not only found one, but honed it like an art form till it yielded a product that fills the house on a regular basis. Joe, or Yossi to his chevra, told us “Food is life; food is kodesh.” “It’s about craft and high quality. You’ve got to give it the time and attention it takes to develop.” And indeed Joe has done so. His 74” smoker (which he lovingly dubbed Dimona-2) is the nucleus of his operation, but just as important is his approach to food and business. “You’re not producing a widget or stereo; my personal commitment to making great food is a life-time journey!” “It’s also about having a good sense of hospitality when Jews come calling at your restaurant. It’s a little different than the hachnassas orchim (welcoming guests) we do at home.” Joe certainly shared that hospitality with us.

...it was hard to keep myself from reaching into that smoker... I confess...

Joe served up vittles Stephen J. Austin or Sam Houston would raise armies to fight for! The table started to fill up with outstanding home made cornbread with onion jam spread (you got to taste ‘em together to understand how awesome those flavors are together), refreshing iced tea and fresh squeezed lemon-ade and home made. Still warm tortilla chip (seriously, dangerously, addictive!) with freshly made guacamole for starters.

We were then treated to an assortment of Smokey Joe’s favorites. The Joe Dawg, the lamb merguez sausages, were marvelous; superbly smoked and flavored.

Lamb Merguez Joe Dawg

They’ve got six types to choose from, it wasn’t easy deciding which to try…

We then demolished their Beef Brisket (well… really… CS did, he kindly let me have one forkful before it was gone!) – smoked for up to 14 hours. The smoked taste did not overpower the brisket taste which was rich, marvelous. In a very uncharacteristic (well you saw the pictures of those ribs, how can you blame me?) uninhibited Flinstonian way, I dug into their long ribs which had been basted in a secret BBQ rub and smoked for around 5 hours in Dimona-2. (Surely, not first date action, unless you want to provide an instant inhibitions dissolver, right from the get-go) They were meaty, packed with flavor and delicious. I literally felt the spices coming through my pores. Quite unexpectedly, my favorite smoked entrée was the chicken.

Brisket, Grilled Chicken and Sweet Potato... mmm, mmm!

I just loved the way the subtle smokey flavor worked its way into the soft flesh of the chicken resulting in a fabulous taste. We had no room for their burgers and chocolate mole sauce, which we heard are outstanding. We’ll have to come back and try those as well as some of their other popular dishes.

A great homey place to come with family and friends to chill an’ enjoy southern smokin’ Jewish hospitality.

SYR

Smokey Joe's on Urbanspoon

25
Mar
10

Brisket Recipes


Brisket is traditional Jewish American fare, but it need not be prepared from a “traditional” recipe. In fact, some “non-traditional” recipes enhance the culinary experience! Here are some of my favorites.

For a nice variation on the traditional:

Passover Brisket Recipe

[non-gebroks]
Like most holidays Passover has lots of traditional foods, such as matzo ball soup, hard-boiled eggs and matzah, a type of flat bread. The holiday kicks off with two dinners in a row, where the story of Passover, the exodus from Egypt, is told. The main dish of the dinner is often brisket, a delicious and succulent type of pot roast perfect for larger groups. Here’s a recipe adapted from Chicago caterer, City Provisions that uses red wine, mushrooms and dried cranberries. Serve it with plenty of mashed potatoes.

Ingredients

1 cup Cabernet Sauvignon
1 cup organic beef broth
1/2 cup cranberry juice
3 Tablespoons potato starch
1 large yellow onion, sliced
3 to 4 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary

1 4-5 pound
brisket, trimmed
6 ounces large Portobello mushrooms, dark gills scraped away, caps thinly sliced
6 ounces of cremini or button mushrooms, chopped
1 cup dried cranberries
Kosher salt and cracked pepper

Preheat oven to 300°F.

In a medium sized bowl, whisk wine, broth, cranberry juice and potato starch. Pour into large roasting pan. Mix in onion, garlic and rosemary. Sprinkle brisket on all sides with Kosher salt and pepper. Place brisket, fat side up, in roasting pan. Spoon some wine mixture over the brisket. Cover pan tightly with heavy-duty foil.

Bake brisket until very tender, basting every hour, for about 3 hours. Remove from oven, transfer brisket to plate; cool 1 hour at room temperature.

Thinly slice brisket across grain. Arrange slices in pan with sauce, overlapping slices a bit. (Cover and refrigerate. To save time on the day of, the brisket can be made a day or two ahead of time)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Surround the brisket with the mushrooms and cranberries in the sauce. Cover pan with foil. Bake about 30 minutes or so, until the mushrooms are tender and brisket is heated through

Transfer sliced brisket and sauce to platter and serve. Garnish with a few more of the cranberries.

—–Amy Sherman.

For a very different taste:

Chef Emeril Lagasse’s Passover Brisket

[non-gebroks]
Ingredients

8 to 10 pound brisket
Garlic cloves
1 quart beef stock (unsalted or low salt)
3 large onions, sliced
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons Emeril’s Original Essence, (recipe follows)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 cup ketchup
1 cup chili sauce
1 cup brown sugar

Directions

Preheat oven to 500 degrees F.

Using a paring knife and your finger, stuff brisket all over with garlic. Place brisket in a baking dish or casserole and bake until browned on top, remove from oven, turn brisket and return to oven until browned on both sides. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Add enough beef stock to casserole to come up 1 inch on sides, cover with foil and bake one hour.

While brisket is cooking, heat a large skillet over medium high heat and saute onions in vegetable oil, stirring occasionally, until caramelized and most liquid has evaporated, about 20 minutes. Set aside.

Remove brisket from oven after one hour and add caramelized onions and all remaining ingredients, moving meat around to combine ingredients. Cover and continue to bake until very tender but not falling apart, another 2 to 3 hours. Remove brisket to a carving board and slice. Strain reserved cooking liquids and pour over sliced brisket. Brisket may be returned to casserole dish and allowed to cool, then served the next day. (Reheated in oven.)

Brisket is better if made a day in advance.

Essence (Emeril’s Creole Seasoning):

* 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
* 2 tablespoons salt
* 2 tablespoons garlic powder
* 1 tablespoon black pepper
* 1 tablespoon onion powder
* 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
* 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
* 1 tablespoon dried thyme

Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.

Yield: about 2/3 cup

If you’d rather make a very traditional brisket, here is a delicious recipe:

Baker’s Best Passover Brisket

[non-gebroks]
Baker’s Best chef Geoff Skillman trims his own brisket, but butchers will do it for you. Don’t eliminate all the fat (or you may not have any flavor left). You can make the brisket, chill and skim the liquid, and reheat the dish the following day.

1 whole brisket (6 to 7 pounds)
9 carrots, cut into 3-inch pieces
6 stalks celery, strings removed, cut into 3-inch pieces
8 medium onions, roots intact, cut into quarters
3 bay leaves
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 cups Concord grape wine
1 quart beef stock
1 cup honey
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 pint cherry tomatoes, stems removed

Set the oven at 350 degrees.

Trim excess fat from the brisket and place it in a large flameproof casserole. You can also use a deep roasting pan.

Place the carrots, celery, and onions around and on the meat. Add the bay leaves, garlic, wine, stock, honey, and plenty of salt and pepper.

Cover the pan with a double thickness of foil and transfer it to the oven. Bake the brisket for 3 to 4 hours or until it is very tender. Remove it from the oven.

Turn the oven temperature up to 450 degrees. Have on hand a rimmed baking sheet.

Remove the vegetables from the pan with a slotted spoon and set them on the baking sheet. Transfer to the oven and roast the vegetables for 40 minutes or until they caramelize at the edges.

Set the brisket on a cutting board and slice it diagonally against the
grain.

Reheat the meat by setting the flameproof casserole or roasting pan directly onto a burner. When it is hot, taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if you like.

Arrange the meat on a large platter and garnish with the caramelized vegetables, cherry tomatoes, and roasted potatoes. Serve at once.

Any of the above, is absolutely delicious!!

SYR

23
Feb
10

Abigael’s on Broadway


Abigael’s (1407 Broadway – at 39th Street, New York, NY; Tel: 212.575.1407) calls to mind the posh elegance of the bygone era where films like My Man Godfrey, with William Powell and Carole Lombard, were set. It is a classy, sedate and uniquely appointed restaurant. Yet… the simple but rich atmosphere and decor, are not all that attract the eye and whet the palate at Abigael’s… The dishes are inspired and delicious!

Partial view of Abigael's main dining room

I met Chef Jeff Nathan in the small private library (one of various party rooms at Abigael’s). There, amidst the Soncino Talmud and the Encyclopedia Britannica we discussed what precipitated his becoming a Chef. As a member of a generation where every Jewish parent dreamed of “my son the doctor” or “my son the lawyer,” Jeff Nathan journeyed against the grain and, after a stint in the US Navy, attended the Culinary Institute of America. Driven to transcend and surpass, as in all else he ever attempted, chef Nathan dominated the competition and graduated at the top of his class in 1980.

Since 1998 he has been the chef/host of PBS’ “New Jewish Cuisine, the only international gourmet Kosher cooking series, which is seen in four countries and translated into three languages.” He is also a kosher and restaurant consultant to various food and wine producers.

I started the meal with with Abigael’s Ultimate Sushi Platter which consisted of three sushi rolls.

Ultimate Sushi Platter presented with a soothing, drip fountain

The three rolls are: Tempura Trio (salmon, tuna, and fluke, tempura fried, with avocado, masago and scallions), Broadway (seaweed roll with tuna, yellow-tail and salmon, cucumber, avocado, Japanese dressing and masago), and Green Tea (yellowtail and avocado, topped with salmon, spicy tuna tartar and sweet wasabi soy sauce). Though fish and sushi are but a recently acquired tastes of mine, I did find the platter beautifully presented and deliciously toothsome to eat.

I then tried their Smoked Brisket Eggroll (Texas style, with barbecue vinaigrette and a chipotle potato salad). This dish fully demonstrates the creativity of Jeff Nathan as he metamorphoses the quintessentially traditional Brisket with a saucy bold new flavor and crispy exterior. Flavorful, as my mother used to say, ta’am fun ganeiden!

I followed that full flavored brisket with the Crispy Asian Chicken (crisp fried and tossed with spicy chile sauce, served with sweet and sour sesame-cucumber slaw).

Crispy Asian Chicken

Presentation was again an eyeful and the taste was quite savory.

A Latin American bred carnivore to the core, I loved the Argentine Smoked Short Ribs (house smoked rib tossed tossed with BBQ vinaigrette and chimi churri with scallion whipped potatoes).

Argentine Smoked Short Ribs

The ribs were succulent, heavenly smoked and spiced, cooked to tender perfection. The scallion whipped potatoes… just right!

Great dinner, in a great atmosphere, though missing Carole Lombard or Myrna Loy by my side, but life… isn’t perfect, could I really ask for more?

CS

Abigael's on Broadway on Urbanspoon




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