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Balsamic Brisket

February 20th, 2011 at 06:29 pm

Yesterday, I happened to watch "Secrets of a Restaurant Chef" on Food Network. I've not viewed it before and was taken in by Ann's easy breezy style. She showed making a brisket that made our mouths water. It looked juicy and delicious, so when we did our weekly run to the store, we picked up a small brisket.

I have tomorrow off for Presidents' Day so I plan on fixing it for supper tomorrow night. She served potato pancakes with it -- she used mashed potatoes to bind the potato pancakes instead of flour or bread crumbs.

Beef Brisket

Ingredients
Extra-virgin olive oil
1 (5-pound) beef brisket
Kosher salt
1/4 pound slab bacon, skin removed and reserved, bacon cut into lardons
3 large onions, thinly sliced
3 celery ribs, thinly sliced on the bias
4 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped
1 pound cremini mushrooms, stemmed and finely sliced
2 cups balsamic vinegar
3 to 4 cups chicken stock
4 bay leaves
1 fresh thyme bundle
1 bunch finely chopped fresh chives, for garnish
Directions
Coat a large roasting pan with olive oil and bring to a high heat. Season the brisket generously with salt. Add the brisket to the pan and brown well on both sides. Remove the brisket from the pan and reserve.


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.


Lower the heat to medium, ditch the excess oil, and add the bacon and reserved skin to the pan with a little more oil. Cook the bacon, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is crispy and has let out a lot of fat. Add the onions and celery. Season with salt and cook until they are very soft and aromatic, 7 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Toss in the mushrooms and cook until they are soft and wilted. Add the balsamic vinegar and reduce it by half. Taste it - it will be very vinegary, but that's ok, don't worry. Season with salt, if needed. Lay the brisket on top of the veggie mix and add the chicken stock to the pan until it just covers the brisket. Add the bay leaves and thyme.


Cover the pan with foil and roast in the oven. Roast for 1 hour, check the brisket, and turn it over. Add more stock if the liquid level has reduced. Cover the pan again and return it to the oven for another hour. Remove the foil and roast for 30 minutes more.


Remove the roasting pan from the oven, transfer the brisket to a cutting board, cover with foil, and let rest for 20 minutes.


Skim off any excess fat from the cooking liquid. If the vegetables are swimming in liquid, reduce the liquid on the stovetop over medium-high heat. You want the sauce to be soupy. Taste the liquid and re-season if needed. Slice the brisket against the grain on the bias. Serve topped with the onion-mushroom mixture and sprinkle with chopped chives.

I certainly hope it tastes as good as it looks!

2 Responses to “Balsamic Brisket”

  1. retire@50 Says:

    I've watched her several times and she has some really good ideas. But I think she uses way too much salt. It seems like she constantly ads more salt to everything. I wonder what the food really tastes like?

  2. rob62521 Says:

    I agree -- too much salt is used. I didn't use as much as she did. But it seems like a lot of the Food Network folks overuse the salt. Ina Garten has lots of salt in everything.

    I wound up changing the recipe because the vinegar was too strong and I refused to keep adding salt to get rid of it. I drained most of the liquid and put in more garlic and water and it was really tasty. The next time I make it, I'll start with less Balsamic vinegar.

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