Italian Beef Brisket

RSVP Please!

I am catering a New Year’s Eve party, which I’ve done for the past 5 years. Usually about 50 people show up, but because most people do not rsvp I never have a clear idea of numbers. One woman last year showed up with an extra 14 people! This year I am doing an Italian menu and making an Italian Beef Brisket. I did a run through last night on a small pot roast and have tweaked the recipe. The sauce is really good.

Italian Beef Brisket

12 lb Beef brisket
Salt and pepper, to taste
¼ cup cumin
¼ cup paprika
¼ cup fennel seed, crushed
¼ cup red pepper flakes
¼ cup oregano
1 cup dried basil
¾ cup olive oil
3 oz garlic, minced
1 (46 oz) can tomato juice

2 yellow onions, chopped
3 tomatoes, chopped
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup whole grain mustard
½ cup red wine vinegar
1 cup balsamic vinegar
½ cup basil, roughly chopped

Sprinkle the brisket generously with salt and pepper.

Make the rub:
In a small bowl, combine the cumin, paprika, fennel seeds, red pepper flakes, oregano, dried basil, 2/3 of the olive oil and 2/3 of the minced garlic. Rub the brisket thoroughly on all sides with the rub and allow it to come to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the brisket in a heavy roasting pan and pour in enough tomato juice to come about 3/4 of the way up the meat and vegetables. Cover the top of the pan with 2 sheets of parchment paper, then with aluminum foil. (The tomato juice will react unpleasantly with the aluminum foil if they touch.)

Bake for 3 1/2 hours, or until the meat is tender.

Make the sauce:
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, heat the remaining oil until hot but not smoking. Add the onions and sauté, stirring frequently, for 7 to 9 minutes, or until browned. Add the remaining garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, sugar, mustard, red wine vinegar, and balsamic vinegar, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 1 hour; the sauce will thicken.

In a food processor or blender, puree the sauce until smooth. Stir in the basil and salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

Serve with the sauce on the side.


2 thoughts on “Italian Beef Brisket

  1. Happy New Year – we are almost there. How do you deal with a 12lb piece of meat? I am sure that you will manage beautifully and it will be a great success, have a lovely evening!

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