I buy beef by the side. In that side of beef I get 2 briskets (it’s actually one large brisket, I have them cut it in two) and 1 flank steak, two of my favorite cuts. Because I only get a limited number of these cuts, I’m pretty picky about how I prepare them.
In my recipe binder I probably have 20 different recipes for preparing brisket, all of which I have yet to try. I have several brisket recipes bookmarked as well, haven’t tried any of those either. I don’t own a smoker, and liquid smoke is just cheating, so I have yet to prepare smoked brisket (yes, yes, I know, it’s fabulous, I must try it! I will, I promise, just not today). So every time I pull a precious brisket of beef from my freezer, I carefully thumb through my recipe binder trying to decide which one to try. But I’m chicken. I love brisket. I don’t want to chance that a recipe might not be all it’s cracked up to be, and then end up wasting that beloved cut of meat.
So instead, I opt for the stand by. The go-to brisket recipe that resides in the beef section of my recipe binder. The one I found online who knows how many years ago. The one that I make every single time I make brisket because I don’t dare take a chance! The same one that I have loved for years. It’s simple. It’s delicious. It makes its own gravy. Maybe you’ve even tried it yourself, or found it online and it’s sitting in your recipe binder right now and you’re afraid to try it! Well, take it from me, you will love it!
The ingredient list is small, but the baking time is long. I usually don’t make this until the weather cools off because it needs four hours in the oven. It can be made in the slow cooker, according to the recipe, but I’ve always made it in the oven. My motto: if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
I have adapted this recipe only slightly to make things a little easier, though the basics are all the same.
Beef Brisket in Tomato Onion Gravy
3 lb beef brisket
1 15-oz can stewed tomatoes
2 cups water
1 envelope onion soup mix
6 ginger snap cookies
Preheat oven to 325 F. Place brisket in a 13×9 baking dish.
Place canned tomatoes (with juices), water, onion soup mix, and ginger snap cookies into a blender. Puree until all ingredients are combined and uniform. Pour mixture over the brisket.
Seal pan tightly with foil. Place in oven and bake, without peeking, for 3 hours.
Remove pan from oven and reduce temperature to 225 F. Remove brisket and slice against the grain. Place slices back into the gravy in the pan and reseal. Add another piece of foil in case there were any rips in the first one. Return pan to oven for one more hour.
Remove from oven, carefully peel back foil and move meat to a serving dish. Pour some of the gravy over the meat and put some more into a gravy boat.
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