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Author Notes: I found a brisket recipe on epicurious.com, from Gourmet December 1995 that had many positive reviews and comments. Inspired by reviewers' suggestions of adding wine, I visited my trusty Joy of Cooking Boeuf Bourg go-to recipe and combined the two recipes. I served this for Christmas dinner and it was a huge hit. Definitely make this one day before serving, and either make the gravy a couple hours after roasting or right before serving. —Sadassa_Ulna
5- to 6-pound beef brisket
tablespoons butter, divided
tablespoons olive or canola oil
medium yellow onions, diced
cloves garlic, minced or pressed
Turkish Bay leaves ( 1/2 a California variety)
teaspoon ground thyme (or 1 Tbsp. fresh, chopped)
teaspoon freshly ground pepper
cups inexpensive (box) Cabernet Sauvignon or other dry red wine
- Dice onion and chop garlic if you haven't already. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit. Place large Dutch oven (or other baking pan big enough to hold brisket) in oven to pre-heat.
- Rinse and pat dry the brisket. Pull out Dutch oven and add 2 T. of oil. Run 1 T. of butter (carefully) around sides of pot if you think brisket will touch sides. Place brisket in pot - do not cover - and place in oven. Roast 35 minutes while you cook onions:
- Heat a large skillet over medium high heat; add remaining oil, butter and onions. Stir occasionally and cook until golden with edges turning brown. Add garlic, spices, and 2 cups of the wine. Allow to get to boiling point then turn off heat.
- Pull brisket out of the oven; add onion mixture to the pot, plus 2 more cups wine and 2 cups water. Place lid or foil on the pot and leave a 1/2' space for steam to escape. Return to oven and continue to cook for another 4 hours.
- Pull pot from oven and remove lid to allow to cool for one hour or so. Pull brisket from the pot and scrape any onion mixture from meat back into the pot. Remove the bay leaves and pour onion mixture into a lidded container and refrigerate 2-3 hours or overnight. Wrap brisket in foil and refrigerate overnight.
- Make a gravy from the onion mixture by first discarding any white chunks of solidified fat from the mix. Then puree in a food processor or blender, slowly adding up to a cup of water and one teaspoon each of salt and pepper to get the right taste and consistency. Refrigerate if not serving within two hours.
- To serve, pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. and heat gravy on the stove in a saucepot. Slice brisket and place in a baking dish; pour gravy over all and cover with foil. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until piping hot.
- Serve with mashed potatoes or crusty bread. And a good red wine!