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Brined Brisket

Serves 6-8 servings

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INGREDIENTS
  • 1 5-pound well-trimmed brisket
  • For the Brine:
  • 3 quarts plus 1 cup water, divided 
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 orange, sliced
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 bunch parsley, roughly chopped
  • Freshly grated black pepper
  • 1/2 cup Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons butter or olive oil
  • 4 large onions, sliced 
  • 3 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 8 whole medium carrots, peeled
  • For the Gremolata:
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 cup parsley
  • 1 cup carrots tops (if they’re nice)
  • 1/4 cup toasted almonds
PREPARATION

Pat the meat dry and pierce it all over on both sides with the tip of skewer or small, sharp knife tip.

In a large, 2-gallon, re-sealable plastic bag, combine 3 quarts of icy water, bay leaves, orange, Worcestershire, parsley and black pepper. Bring remaining 1 cup of water to a boil and add the salt to dissolve. Add salt water to icy brine. Add the meat, then remove all the air and seal the bag. Place on a tray in the fridge and weigh the meat down under a second tray to keep it submerged. Refrigerate for 1-2 days.

To cook, remove the meat from the brine and pat dry. To a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add olive oil and meat, and brown the brisket on all sides. Remove meat to a plate and add butter or olive oil to pan to melt. Once it foams, add onions, thyme and chicken stock. Bring to a bubble and add brisket back. Cover, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 2 1/2 hours. During the last 45 minutes of cooking, add whole carrots, cover and keep cooking. 

For the gremolata, on a large cutting board, finely chop the orange zest, parsley, carrot tops and toasted almonds together. 

Remove the vegetables to a warm platter, then slice the meat and top with the stock to keep moist. Serve topped with gremolata.

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