Beef braised with porcini and red wine is classically Italian, but here’s a Jewish twist: adding sweet, caramelized onions. Portland, Oregon chef Jenn Louis says this combo packs a flavorful umami punch for a brisket that’ll be the star of your holiday meal.
Porcini: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Place the mushrooms in a small bowl and cover with boiling water. Let sit until rehydrated, 10–15 minutes. Meanwhile, line a strainer with cheesecloth and place over a bowl. Gently squeeze the liquid from the rehydrated mushrooms with your hands and set the mushrooms aside. Pour soaking liquid through the cloth-lined strainer into the bowl. (The cloth will filter out any dirt and sediment from the mushrooms.) Set the soaking liquid aside.
Vegetables: Cut onions into a large dice. Smash garlic, releasing the peel, then roughly chop; roughly chop mushrooms. Set aside.
Brisket: In a large skillet, heat 4 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat. Season brisket with salt and pepper on both sides. Sear brisket, fat side down, until golden brown, 5–10 minutes. Flip over and sear the other side, about 5 more minutes. Transfer to a roasting pan.
Braising liquid: Add another tablespoon of oil to the skillet, lower heat to medium, and add onions, garlic, mushrooms, rosemary, and bay leaves. Stir in a pinch of salt and sauté until onions are translucent, 8–10 minutes. Add tomato paste, and stir constantly until caramelized, 2–3 minutes. Add red wine and bring to a simmer; cook until the liquid has nearly evaporated, 5–6 minutes. Add reserved porcini soaking liquid and chicken stock. Raise heat to medium-high and bring back to a simmer. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Pour hot liquid over brisket and cover with foil. Braise in oven for 2–2½ hours, flipping the brisket once halfway through cooking. After 2½ hours, raise heat to 350 degrees F, remove foil, and continue cooking to brown, 30 minutes. Brisket should be very tender when pierced with a skewer.
Assembly: Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly in braising liquid. Remove to a cutting board and thinly slice across the grain. Pour braising liquid over the meat before serving.