- Dry Rub:
- 1 tbsp dried thyme
- 1 tbsp sweet paprika
- 1 tbsp dried sage
- 2 tsp freshly ground pepper
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 6-7 lb beef brisket slab
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 5 onions, peeled, halved, sliced
- Braising Liquid:
- 2 cups beef stock, lo sodium if possible
- 1/2 cup red wine, shiraz or cabernet preferred
- 10 oz can of diced tomatoes, undrained
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 tsp black peppercorns
- 1 bay leaf, fresh if available
- 2 fennel bulbs, sliced into wedges, sub celery if desired
- Combine dry rub ingredients together.
- Trim the beef brisket. You want to keep a layer of fat on top, but you should remove all the hard fat and as much of the other fat as you want, leaving a medium layer of fat to fully cover the top. It is possible to buy a pre-trimmed brisket, make sure the important fat layer is there. Look at how the fibers run in the meat to help you slice it properly later. Rub the spice mix all over the trimmed brisket, and allow it stand at room temperature for an hour.
- Preheat the oven to 300 degreed F.
- Heat the oil in a pan large enough to hold the brisket. Brown the beef on both sides over a medium high heat, 4-5 minutes on each side. Remove the brisket from the heat and set it aside.
- In a heavy duty roaster or dutch oven (not cast iron), cover the bottom with the onions. Place the beef, fat side up, on top the onions,
- Pour the beef stock, red wine and diced tomatoes with the juice around the sides of the brisket. Add the garlic, peppercorns, and bay leaf, and the place the fennel wedges around the edges. Cover and place in a 300 degree preheated oven and bake for 4 hours, basting every 45 minutes to keep the meat moist.
- It is best to refrigerate overnight. Allow to cool slightly before placing it in the fridge, Use an ice bath to cool quicker.
- The next morning, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the brisket from the liquid. Remove all the fat, and slice it against the grain. Place the slices in a casserole dish. Remove any fat from the juices and heat the liquid and contents over a medium fire to a light simmer. Pour the juices and contents, removing only the bayleaf, over the sliced meat, cover, and bake for 1 hour.
- If you are not able to refrigerate overnight (not recommended). Remove the beef from roasting pan, place it on a cutting board, cover it with foil, and rest for 30 minutes. Raise the oven temperature to 350. Slice the brisket against the grain, lay it in the casserole, top with the liquid and contents, minus the bayleaf, cover and bake at 350 for 1 hour.