Compared to classics like turkey or roast beef, which require precise timing, brisket is an amazingly forgiving holiday main dish. (It actually tastes better when made ahead and reheated!) Not to mention, it actually makes its own gravy as it cooks, a luscious sauce that's begging for mashed potatoes.

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Ingredients

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 325°. Season beef on both sides with 1 teaspoon each salt and cracked pepper. Heat oil in a 4- to 5-quart Dutch oven. Brown meat well on both sides, cutting in half to fit if necessary. Remove from heat; turn meat fat side up. Sprinkle with sage and spread with mustard. Add onion, carrots, celery and garlic to pot.

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  • In a medium bowl, whisk together ale, the water and tomato paste. Pour mixture over meat. Bring to boiling over high heat. Cover and transfer to oven. Bake for 3 1/2 to 4 hours or until fork tender.

  • Transfer meat to a cutting board to cool slightly. Meanwhile, prepare sauce by pureeing cooking liquid and vegetables in the Dutch oven with an immersion blender (or cool 15 minutes and transfer to a blender). Season to taste. TO SERVE IMMEDIATELY: Thinly slice meat across grain. Arrange on a platter and top with some sauce. Top with Celery-Horseradish Garnish if desired. Pass remaining sauce. TO SERVE SOON: Thinly slice meat across grain. Arrange in a casserole dish or on an oven-safe platter. Top with some sauce and cover with foil. Keep warm in a 275° to 325° oven for up to 1 hour. Top with Celery-Horseradish Garnish if desired. Pass extra sauce, rewarmed if necessary. TO SERVE LATER: Wrap cooled meat and transfer sauce to a covered bowl. Chill up to 2 days. To reheat, slice beef across grain; arrange in a casserole dish. Top with sauce (remove congealed fat first) and cover with foil. Warm in a 325° oven for 1 hour or until heated through. If you like, transfer beef to a platter and sauce to a pitcher. Top with Celery-Horseradish Garnish, if desired.

*Celery-Horseradish Garnish

In a small bowl, combine 3/4 cup chopped celery leaves, 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley, 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.

Nutrition Facts

412 calories; 32 g total fat; 91 mg cholesterol; 498 mg sodium. 7 g carbohydrates; 22 g protein;

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