FoodGirl and the kitchen

The Brisket – The Star of the Jewish Table


As we speak, Jewish housewives all over the globe are getting out their finest china, their crispest tablecloths and their oldest recipes – all in preparation for the Jewish high holidays. These holidays bring the fondest memories with my family to my mind. Golden chicken soup with fluffy matzo balls, tart apples with sweet honey and – the star of the dinner, so magical, dreamy, melt in your mouth – brisket! Like many Jewish recipes, brisket gets its roots from the need to use up some of the least expensive pieces of meat and transform it into tender deliciousness. As the brisket cooks low and slow, connective tissue breaks down, leaving a tender piece of smothered meat.

Growing up, my aunt always made the brisket in our family. Every year she tried a different recipe and every year her malnourished-looking niece (me) licked her plate clean… Much to everyone’s surprise, brisket was this picky eaters’ favorite dish. It had become a ritual: I always came into the kitchen and tore off a piece of the sacred meat and my aunt always asked me, “So, Mila, is it good?” And every year I nodded in agreement as I sloppily licked off the remains of the sauce off my lips. My aunt’s brisket may not have been perfect, but it was hers and it was always good.

As an adult and a graduate of culinary school my love for brisket remained the same. I made hundreds of briskets throughout my career and I was constantly searching for my recipe. I wanted a recipe of my very own. And I tried… I made smoked briskets, crock pot briskets, French style briskets and the very worst, dry brisket. I took an idea or two from each recipe and moved on to create my brisket. This has become my no fuss no muss brisket recipe that I go to year after year. I dare you to tear off a piece!

Classic Brisket


7-8 pounds of brisket

1 bottle of ketchup

1 ½ cups of dry red wine

1 ½ cups water

1.5 tbsp. chicken base *I find it milder than beef base.

¼ cup dehydrated onion flakes

6 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped

2 onions, roughly chopped

6 large carrots, cut into large chunks

Salt and pepper to taste



1. Combine ketchup, water, dehydrated onion, garlic and chicken base and mix to combine.

2.  Slather this beautiful mixture onto the brisket sneaking it into each nook and cranny.

3. Let stand in refrigerator for 24 hours.

4. Preheat oven to 275-degrees and place remaining ingredients over brisket in a tightly sealed roasting pan into the oven.

5.  Cook for 6-8 hours.  Typically the rule of thumb is an hour a pound.  But the true test is when it pulls apart with two forks.

6. Place in refrigerator overnight to cool.

7. Remove fat and cut against the grain NOT with the grain.

8. Place sauce over sliced meat and put into 350-degree oven to warm the meat and sauce.

Check out for more pictures and details!

Mila Furman




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