Q: A good friend of mine is seeking a recipe for beef brisket which she had cut out last year but now has lost. It was a good one and she wants to make it for a special event this weekend. She says the recipe ran last year and ran about the time of a Jewish holiday; was a lead piece in the section. Would appreciate any help you can give. She is an avid reader of the Tribune's food section.
—Mary Daniels, Homewood
A: Any event is bound to be special with this brisket, the recipe for which ran with my story, "Tender is the brisket: How to soften a tough cut for Passover" in April 2011. It's too good a dish to wait for Passover or any other holiday; make it now!
What makes this recipe even better is that it comes from Daniel Rose, a man who grew up in suburban Wilmette and went on to open Spring, one of the hottest restaurants in Paris. Rose is a great guy; meeting him — and sampling his Frenchified version of an American lobster roll — was a highlight of a trip to France a few years back.
Brisket with ginger, orange peel and tomato
Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 2 hours 50 minutes
Makes: 10 servings
This recipe from Paris-based chef Daniel Rose was published in a cookbook by Joan Nathan called "Quiches, Kugels, and Couscous: My Search for Jewish Cooking in France."
1 beef brisket, 3 to 5 pounds
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
12 small spring onions, halved, or 2 medium onions, thickly sliced
6 carrots, peeled
8 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 cup dry white wine
3 cups veal, beef or chicken broth
3 small tomatoes, halved
2 sprigs fresh thyme, or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
5 sprigs fresh parsley plus 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 piece (1/2-inch long) ginger root
Green top of 1 leek
2 each: lemons, oranges
1. Season the brisket with salt and pepper to taste. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Brown the meat, about 4 minutes per side. Remove.
2. Add the onions, carrots and garlic to the Dutch oven; cook until just beginning to soften, 5-10 minutes. Raise the heat to high; add the vinegar. Stir, scraping up bits on the bottom of the pot. Add the wine; cook, stirring, to reduce, 3-5 minutes.
3. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Return brisket to the Dutch oven; add the broth. Heat to a simmer; add the tomatoes, thyme, bay leaf, parsley sprigs, ginger and leek top. Peel the zest in long strips from one lemon and one orange. Add to the pot. Cover; place in oven. Cook, 45 minutes; lower temperature to 275 degrees; cook until tender, 2-2 1/2 hours.
4. Remove the meat and vegetables from the pot. Discard the zest, herb sprigs, ginger, bay leaf and leek. Allow meat to rest 15 minutes. Slice on the bias; arrange on a serving platter along with the vegetables. Strain the sauce into a saucepan; reduce over high heat until thickened. Grate the zest of remaining lemon and orange. Pour sauce over brisket; sprinkle with grated zest and chopped parsley.
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