Saturday, November 9, 2013

Recipe: Atlanta Brisket

Based on a recipe from the October 2012 Cook's Country. Read the story behind this dish in Sunday, Dinner for TwoMakes about 12 servings.


1 3½-pound beef brisket, flat cut
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 pound onions
2 cups cola
1½ cups ketchup
4 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried thyme 
salt and black pepper


  1. Trim the brisket, leaving about ¼-inch of fat.
  2. Poke the brisket all over with a fork,  rub all sides with 1 tablespoon salt, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 6 to 24 hours.
  3. Pat the brisket dry and season with black pepper.
  4. Peel the onions, cut them in half through the poles, then cut into ½-inch slices.
  5. Heat a large skillet with the oil over medium-high heat until just smoking.
  6. Add the seasoned brisket, fat-side down, and weigh it down with a heavy dutch oven or cast iron skillet. You may need to cut the brisket so it will fit in the pan.
  7. Cook until well browned, about 4 minutes, then repeat on the other side, another 4 minutes.
  8. Transfer the browned brisket to a plate and add the onions to the skillet with a pinch of salt. If the pan is dry add a few teaspoons of vegetable oil.
  9. Cook the onions, stirring occasionally and scraping up the brown bits on the bottom of the pan, until the onions are soft and golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes.
  10. Heat the oven to 325° with a rack in the lower middle position .
  11. While the onions cook, whisk together the cola, ketchup, brown sugar, onion powder, garlic powder, thyme, 1 teaspoon table salt, and 1 teaspoon black pepper in a medium bowl.
  12. Spread the cooked onions in a 13x9-inch baking dish.
  13. Place the brisket on top of the onions, fat side up. Add any juices from the meat to the sauce.
  14. Pour the sauce over the brisket, place a sheet of parchment paper on top of the brisket, and cover the baking dish tightly with aluminum foil.
  15. Roast the meat and sauce until a fork slips easily into and out of the beef, 3½ to 4 hours.
  16. Transfer the brisket to a cooling rack and rest for 30 minutes, still in the liquid and covered with foil.
  17. Transfer the brisket to a carving board and use a large spoon to skim fat from the sauce.
  18. Slice the brisket across the grain into ¼-inch slices, return the meat to the baking dish, and serve with sauce.
Trim the brisket, poke it full of holes with a fork, cover with salt, and refrigerate.
Slice onions.
Pat the brisket dry and season with black pepper.
Brown both sides of the brisket, weighing it down so it browns evenly.
Remove the meat to a plate then brown the onions.
While the onions cook whisk together the sauce ingredients.
Layer the onions in a baking dish then put the brisket on top.
Pour the sauce over the beef and onions and cover with a sheet of parchment so the acid in the sauce doesn't react with the foil.
Cover tightly with aluminum foil and roast at 325° until fork tender.
Rest in the sauce, remove meat, skim off fat, slice the brisket and return it to the sauce, and serve.

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