Until a couple of years ago, I knew nothing about the different types and cuts of meat. I didn’t know what brisket was. I had always associated it with pastrami or corned beef or something like that. For someone who was a vegetarian for ten years, it didn’t concern me a whole lot. But now that I am meat eater, and a happy one at that, it wasn’t until I stopped at the Whole Foods meat counter that I entertained the thought of cooking my own brisket. The butcher gave me a sample of some that was slow cooked the night before and, holy moley, was it GOOD. It was tender and flavorful and I wanted more. So I bought myself a good sized hunk of brisket and set about the task of reproducing that succulent piece of meat.
The friendly butcher gave me some simple but useful tips on cooking brisket – keep the temperature low and cook it for a long time. A long, long time. Like 12 hours long. So that’s what I did. I rubbed it with some love and threw it in the oven before I went to bed. (Now if my mother were to read this, she’d probably sieze up with worry that I would ever leave a heat-producing appliance unsupervised while her child and grandchild slept, but I figured that my smoke detectors and, more importantly, my husband would alert me before the house burns down.)
When I woke up the next morning, the house smelled like meat heaven, if there is such a place. As I mentioned before, I am a big proponent of hands-off cooking and I was really happy with the results. The long and slow process breaks down all the connective tissue and yields a rich and moist brisket. Check it out.
Low and Slow Brisket
Serves 6 (with plenty left over)
One 3 – 4 pound organic, grass-fed brisket
3 – 5 tablespoons dry rub (recipe below or use your favorite)
- Preheat oven to 225 degrees F.
- Rinse and pat dry brisket.
- Sprinkle dry rub, salt and pepper over the brisket and give it a nice rub all around.
- Place meat on baking sheet and roast for the 10 to 12 hours.
- Optional: Brush brisket with barbeque sauce and return to oven for a few more minutes.
- Let meat rest for 20 minutes before serving.
3 tablespoons coconut sugar
4 tablespoons paprika
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
1 1/2 tablespoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Mix all ingredient together and store in air tight container.
The butcher has offered to trim the fat from the brisket but I asked him to leave it on. I thought having too little might make the meat dry after all the cooking. Because my family and friends like barbeque sauce, I did the optional step, extra sugar and all, and served some more sauce on the side as well. Yum, yum!
For all you fellow happy carnivores, I hope you’ll try this. If you like slow cooking, let me know how and what you cook.