In this classic Jewish-American brisket recipe, a first-cut brisket is topped with just a few simple ingredients, followed by a slow cook in the oven. The reward is a tender, deeply flavorful main course for your holiday meal. Slice and freeze up to a month in advance, and serve with your choice of sides.
Note: Many brisket recipes will call for trimming the fat before cooking. I like to cook the brisket with the fat on, as I believe it ensures against drying out. It’s also easier to cut off the fat when it is cooked and chilled.
For the brisket:
- 1st cut brisket
- salt and pepper
- garlic powder
- 3 stalks celery, sliced
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 12-ounce bottle chili sauce
- 1 bottle beer
For the vegetables:
- 1 – 2 lbs carrots, peeled, trimmed and halved lengthwise (if they are especially large you can cut into quarters)
- 1 – 2 lbs new potatoes, scrubbed
- 3 Tbsp olive oil, divided
- 2 Tbsp butter or margarine (can also substitute with additional olive oil)
- Fresh thyme and rosemary sprigs
- To make the brisket (do at least one day before serving): Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a pan with foil (the pan should be sized to hold the brisket snugly).
- Place the brisket, fat side up, in the pan. Season generously with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Top with the celery and onions.
- Roast, uncovered, for 40 minutes. Pour the chili sauce over. Fill the empty bottle one-third with water and shake; pour over the chili sauce. Reduce the oven to 350 degrees, cover the pan and cook for 90 minutes. Add the beer and continue to cook, covered, for 40 minutes more. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Refrigerate overnight.
- Remove all but ¼” of the fat from the top of the brisket (see Note, below). Slice up the brisket and return to the sauce. At this point you can freeze it, put it back in the fridge to reheat later in the day or continue with the recipe. Let the brisket sit out for about an hour before reheating.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Reheat the brisket, covered, for about 40 minutes, basting occasionally.
- To make the vegetables: Preheat the oven to 475 degrees; line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Working with one potato at a time, place on a cutting board between 2 chopsticks. Cut slits in the potato, about ¼” apart, slicing almost all the way through (the chopsticks will prevent you from slicing all the way through the potato).
- Toss the carrots with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Season with salt and pepper and place on your prepared baking sheet. Place the potatoes on the sheet and brush with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Season with salt and pepper. Scatter some of the thyme and rosemary sprigs on top, saving some for garnish.
- Bake for 20 minutes. Melt the butter with the remaining tablespoon of oil and brush on the potatoes, which should have started to fan out at this point. Be sure to get the butter/oil mixture between the slices. Bake for an additional 20 minutes and serve, garnished with thyme and rosemary sprigs.