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Alex's Slow Cooked Brisket
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Recipe courtesy of Alex Guarnaschelli

Slow Cooked Brisket with Brown Sugar, Carrots and Gremolata

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 4 hr 20 min (includes resting time)
  • Active: 55 min
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings
There are two distinct parts of brisket, the first and second cuts. The first cut is very lean, and the second loaded with beautiful (fat) marbling. This makes cooking a “whole” brisket a felony. It’s like cooking a small and large potato in the same oven, for the same amount of time, and expecting them both to be perfectly cooked. Brisket falls under the category of “butcher’s cuts” that were prized and taken home more by the butcher than the customers. That said, adjust your cooking time for slightly shorter with the leaner pieces and slightly longer with the more “marbled” ones. This is a simple recipe with a good thickening trick at the end—and don’t be scared: gremolata is just a fancy word for garlic, parsley and lemon…





Special equipment:
butcher’s twine
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cook the brisket: Tie the circumference of the brisket with butcher’s twine. In a large Dutch oven or other wide heavy pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. When the oil begins to smoke lightly, sprinkle both sides of the brisket with salt and pepper. Use metal tongs to add the meat to the pot. If the oil is hot enough, the meat won’t stick. Cook, undisturbed, on its first side, until browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Turn on the other side and brown, 3 to 5 additional minutes. Remove the meat from the pot and place it on a baking sheet.
  3. Cook the vegetables: Lower the heat to medium. In the same pot, add the carrots, shallots and garlic and sprinkle them with another pinch of salt. Brown for 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the sugar and vinegar and simmer over very low heat until the liquid reduces and starts to coat the carrots, 3 to 5 minutes. Pour the vegetables and cooking liquid into a bowl.
  4. Cook the meat: Return the brisket to the pot and add the beef stock. Bring the stock to a gentle simmer. Cover, then place the pot in the center of the oven and cook for 1 hour. Remove the pot from the oven and add the vegetables and their liquid back in. Return the pot to the oven, uncovered, and cook until the meat is tender when pierced with a fork, an additional 1 to 2 hours. (If the meat looks dry or begins to get overly browned, cover the pot with the lid or a layer of aluminum foil for the remaining oven time.)
  5. Make the gremolata: In a small skillet, toast the coriander seeds in 1 teaspoon olive oil until lightly colored and fragrant. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the parsley, garlic, lemon zest and juice and a generous pinch of salt. Add the coriander seeds warm, straight from the skillet. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, then stir and set aside.
  6. Finish: Remove the pot from the oven and allow it to rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Meanwhile, blend half the cooking liquid and half of the remaining vegetables in a blender until smooth, then pour back into the pot. Whisk in the mayonnaise and mustard. Taste for seasoning. Slice the meat against the grain. (It should be fork-tender without being dry.) Transfer the meat and the remaining vegetables to a serving platter. Pour the sauce over the meat. Serve with the gremolata.