>In the days before the Bears playoff game against the Seahawks, I decided that I wanted to make some really special food. Normally, I would make a boatload of wings. But since it was the playoffs and all, I figured I needed to do something special. When I was in the grocery store, I saw some brisket. I have never tried to cook one before. In fact, I had never even seen a whole brisket, other than on TV. It seemed unnecessarily large. I didn’t even think I had a vessel large enough to cook it in. But none of this deterred me. I put it in my cart and went to the checkout.
I don’t think they sell a lot of the briskets at my grocery store. When I went to pay for it, the checker asked me how I was expecting on cooking it.
I looked around for a couple of recipes. I wanted to find a Texas barbecue style recipe. The first one I found wanted me to smother the thing in barbecue sauce. Now, I admit that I don’t know much about making barbecue, but that just didn’t seem right. I ultimately decided to start with this brisket recipe from Paula Deen.
- brisket: the brisket that I bought was like 5 pounds. that amount of meat was way too big for just about anything I had. I wanted to try and cook it in my dutch oven, so I cut it in half and dropped it in.
- spices: 2 T chili powder, 1T garlic powder, 1 T onion powder, 1 T ground pepper, 1 T sugar, 2 t dry mustard. This is what the original recipe called for, and I forgot until after I added all the spices that I had only half the meat. So it was over seasoned, but that was ok since I was planning on overseasoning it anyway. Also, I didn’t have dry mustard – only mustard seeds. I thought about maybe grinding it up with my mortar and pestle, as if that would make a good substitute. But I was feeling lazy.
- roast 1: at this point, I followed the instructions and put the roast in my dutch oven and baked it at 350 degrees for an hour
- beef stock: after an hour, I added some stock. the original recipe called for about a cup and a half of it. but it also said that I would need to just filled whatever pan I was using with about a half inch of liquid. I had reserved the roasting liquid from my pot roast a couple nights earlier. So I used that. I have no idea how much liquid it was.
- roast 2: the recipe then wanted me to cover tightly for 3 hours at 300 degrees. This was why I wanted to use the dutch oven. I don’t like trying to cover things tightly with foil, especially something’s been in the oven for an hour. it seems annoying and like a lot of extra work. if I used the dutch oven, I only needed to put on the lid. it’s cast iron, so it’s friggin heavy and creates a tight seal.
While I was waiting, I started on my other dish of my game-day spread, which was Buffalo Dip. And by the time I got back to the brisket, it was ready to be sliced. It still kind of wanted to fall apart, but I was able to manage some proper slices of it. I thought it would be more like a pastrami or roast beef, where I could slice it thin. But I could only keep it from falling apart by cutting thick slices. Also, my knives could use a sharpening.