Braised Brisket with 36 Cloves of Garlic

Recipe by PaulaG
READY IN: 3hrs 55mins
SERVES: 8-10




  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  • Drop the garlic cloves into boiling water for 30 seconds.
  • Drain immediately.
  • Peel as soon as the garlic is cool enough to handle.
  • Set aside on paper towels to dry.
  • Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a heavy-bottomed roasting pan or casserole large enough to accommodate the meat in one layer.
  • Use two burners, if necessary.
  • Add the brisket and brown well on both sides, about 10 minutes.
  • Transfer the brisket to a platter and set aside.
  • Pour off all but about 1 tablespoon of fat remaining in the pan and add the garlic cloves.
  • Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the garlic edges are tinged with gold.
  • Add the vinegar and deglaze the pan, scraping up all the browned bits from the bottom with a wooden spoon.
  • Add the stock, thyme and rosemary sprigs and reduce the heat to a simmer.
  • Salt and pepper the brisket to taste on all sides, and add it to the pan, fat side up.
  • Spoon the garlic cloves over the meat.
  • Place the brisket in the oven, cover and cook, basting every half-hour, until the meat is fork-tender, 2 1/2 to 3 hours or longer.
  • (As the meat cooks, periodically check that the liquids are bubbling gently. If they are boiling rapidly, turn the oven to 300 degrees).
  • Transfer the brisket to a cutting board and tent it loosely with foil.
  • Prepare the gravy.
  • Strain the braising mixture, reserving the garlic and discarding the thyme and rosemary sprigs.
  • Skim and discard as much fat as possible from the liquid.
  • Puree about 1/2 of the cooked garlic and 1 cup of the defatted braising liquid in a food processor or a blender.
  • Transfer the pureed mixture, the remaining braising liquid, and the rest of the cooked garlic to a skillet.
  • Add the reserved chopped rosemary, minced garlic and the lemon zest.
  • Boil down the gravy over high heat, uncovered, to the desired consistency.
  • Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  • (If you want a smooth gravy, puree all of the cooked garlic cloves.) Cut the brisket into thin slices across the grain at a slight diagonal.
  • Arrange the sliced brisket on a serving platter.
  • Spoon some of the hot gravy all over the meat and pass the rest in a separate sauce boat.