Clara Gluten Free


I started lunch today at 6:30 this morning because I like mornings and I like cooking and most of all I like cooking in the morning. Don't worry, today was brisket, not sandwiches, so I was done by 12:30. It's a long cook-time, but that's because you have too cook the tough-as-nails cut of beef long, low, and slow to break down connective tissues, or else face down a plate of concrete. Which I really don't like to do.  I've made brisket a few times, but only Irish-style, that is, boiling the living daylights out of it.

The boiling offers the distinct advantage that once the brisket is done, you can boil potatoes and carrots and cabbage in the broth, which is really tasty. However, I think next time I get a cut of brisket I am going to roast it, not boil it. I know- branching out.  Weird.  But the boiling is a great project, and really cool to watch. The brisket shrinks in size. When I put it in the pot this morning, it was too big for the whole thing to touch the bottom. When I was done, there was between an inch and two inches of clearance on all sides. More than just projects, I love cooking projects. 

Boiled Dinner

1 approx 5 lb cut of brisket
1-2 tbs olive oil
2 bay leaves
1 cabbage

1- If your brisket is not brined, skip to step 2. If your brisket (corned beef) is brined, rinse it thoroughly, place in a large pot (at least 4 quarts), cover with water, and boil for 10 minutes. Pour out the water, and rinse the brisket. 

2- Heat oil in a large pot. Rinse the brisket and brown both sides in the pot. Cover with water. Add the bay leaves and around 2 tsp salt or more if you have a large quantity of water. Bring to a boil, partially covered.

3- The brisket will take between 4-5 hours to cook. Every 30-45 minutes, be sure to come back and flip over the meat, to ensure that it cooks evenly. Add more water as necessary (it should mostly cover the beef). You know the brisket it done when it is soft- you will be able to chip bits of meat away by gently pulling with a fork. Don't cook too long- be sure to pull it out before the meat looks like it is ready to disintegrate. Before you take the brisket out of the water, warm a serving plate.

4- Remove the brisket when it is as done as you would like, slice it against the grain of the meat, place on the warmed serving plate. If you are not cooking the veggies, cover with aluminum foil, and a dishcloth. If you can, store it in a slightly warmed oven. 

5- Cut up potatoes and carrots into 1" cubes and slices. Place in the broth and bring to a rolling boil. Add water if necessary to cover the veggies. Cook for 15 minutes. In the meantime, slice the cabbage through the core into halves and then into eighths. 
6- Test the potatoes and carrots for doneness. You know they are done when you insert a fork into the center of  each and they fall off the fork once you lift them out of the water. When the potatoes and carrots are done remove them from the broth and put the cabbage in the broth. Cook for 5-10 minutes. 

7-Add most of the veggies to the plate of brisket (serve any additional carrots, potatoes and on the side). Serve immediately

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