Brisket in Coffee Bourbon Sauce
Another winner (scroll down for my original brisket).
Another brisket of mine with wacky ingredients that comes out to die for! Just ask all the guests that were at my Seder Demo last night: They were falling like flies! So sorry about indulging in some un-ladylike swagger!
This Star was Just Born!
I was tinkering with coffee, molasses and bourbon, and bingo, I got this beauty!
This is a frequent combo in barbecues and short ribs, so I wanted to explore it as a possible base for my brisket sauce. I know it sounds like it would put some more hair on the chests of lumberjacks; but lo and behold, the results were fork-tender meat, and a wonderfully dark, balanced and unctuous sauce, much more toned down than the seemingly reckless sum of its parts.
Brisket: First Cut and Second Cut Wars
Please don’t believe anyone who will tell you first-cut brisket is not as moist and tender as its second-cut fat an unappealing slab of a counterpart: they will never say that again after they taste this! Just make certain you are not getting some obscure slab of dry stringy meat masquerading (and priced) as first-cut brisket.
To Adapt this Brisket in Coffee Bourbon Sauce for Passover
I simply substitute honey for the molasses, and brandy for the bourbon, and it works just as gloriously. Go for it!
No problem freezing the brisket
Here’s how I like to do it: Slice the brisket. Place the slices side by side vertically in a pan, tightly packed together like a deck of cards, just as if you were serving it now, and pour your gravy over it. cover the pan air-tight, and freeze. To reheat: place the frozen pan at 250 degrees for about 1 hour, or a little longer, until heated through. Or: leave the pan out to thaw a few hours, then reheat at 300 degrees for about 30 minutes, or a little longer, until heated through.
- 2 large onions, sliced very thin
- 1 brisket. 6 to 7 pounds, first cut. Rinsed and patted thoroughly dry
- 2 cups strong coffee, decaf OK
- 1/3 cup bourbon (Passover: brandy)
- 1/3 cup molasses (Passover: honey)
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Scatter the onions in a pan just large enough to fit the meat. Place the brisket on top of the onions. Combine all remaining ingredients in a bowl, and pour the mixture evenly over the meat. Cover tightly with foil, and bake 2 hours. Turn the brisket over, and bake uncovered 1 more hour. Transfer the brisket to a cutting board and wait about 10 minutes before slicing. Meanwhile strain the cooking liquids into a small sauce pan, pressing hard on the solids (and discarding them), and reduce on a high flame to about 2 ½ cups. Let the brisket cool slightly. Slice thin against the grain. In places where the brisket is very long, cut across first before slicing. Pour the gravy on top. Makes a dozen to sixteen ample servings.