Slow roast beef brisket with Guinness
Eating with friends recently, we all had a marvellous meal of beef brisket. I thought that it would be nice to do some experimenting with this cut of meat as it is so good for slow-roasting because of its high collagen content. Initially I was going to use red wine until I spotted a can of Guinness in the cupboard!
Silverside of beef would be an equally good cut to use for this recipe.
- 1 kg brisket of beef, rolled and tied with butchers' string
- 440 ml can of Guinness original
- A few tablespoons of olive oil
- 8 small onions or shallots, peeled and halved
- 3 Cloves of garlic or to taste, peeled and chopped
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
- A handful of dried porcini mushrooms, or any strongly flavoured dried mushrooms. Even fresh button mushrooms would do at a push
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoon your favourite acidic vinegar. Sherry vinegar would be my choice here
- A stick of celery with leaves if possible. I used some cutting celery that was just about to go to seed
- A small sprig of fresh thyme
- 2 small fresh bay leaves
- A sprig of parsley
- A small cube of jaggery, scraped to powder or a level tablespoon of brown sugar
- 1 pint of hot beef stock
- Cornflour to thicken if required
- Preheat the oven to 150° C (300° F - gas 2)
- I'm never keen on vegetables that have been slow cooked, so apart from the mushrooms and the beef, everything else will be discarded or used to make the gravy once the cooking has been finished. I leave the herbs whole for easy removal.
- Heat the olive oil in a large casserole dish, grind lots of fresh pepper into the hot oil and then brown the beef on both sides.
- Add the onions and garlic and sauté for 4 minutes.
- Add the remaining ingredients and mix well.
- Seal the casserole dish with scrunched up silver foil and pot roast in the oven for about 5 hours.
- Discard the carrots and herbs.
- Drain as much of the stock as you need to make the gravy, together with some of the onions and garlic. Reduce a little if you wish and then thicken by stirring in a few teaspoons of cornflour or arrowroot that has been mixed with a little cold water, bring to a bubble and whisk until it is at your desired consistency.
- You could liquidise some of the carrots and herbs too and add to the gravy if you wish.
- Slice very thickly and serve with the mushrooms and gravy.
You could omit the herbs and vegetables and just use a very strong vegetable stock.
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