“I broke quite a few conventions in making this. I'm not sure if Julia Child would have approved! I'm happy to say that my ambition paid off: the smoky brisket brought a fantastic beef flavor, and the vegetables retained their character far more than a traditional stewing would have.”
READY IN:
26hrs
SERVES:
4
UNITS:
US

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. Trim brisket to leave 1/4" of fat cap. Rub all surfaces - including the fat - with an equal mix of salt and pepper. Vacuum seal and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  2. Fill up a large pot with water. Attach sous vide machine and raise the temperature to 155° F. Place the vacuum sealed brisket in the water. If desired, cover the top with ping-pong balls (to retain the heat and keep the food from floating). Cook for 24 hours (don't rely on the timer on the machine!).
  3. About an hour before the 24 hours is over, render the chopped bacon in a large pot. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside for later.
  4. Cook the pearl onions on medium heat in the rendered bacon fat for about 5 minutes, rolling the pot to cook all sides and avoid burning. Add minced garlic and half of the thyme and cook for about 30 seconds, scraping constantly to avoid burning. Remove from heat and set aside.
  5. When the brisket is done in the sous vide, cut open bag, and retain the juices. Pat the brisket dry, then reapply a salt and pepper rub.
  6. Either use an offset smoker or a barbecue grill with one side turned off. Place a "boat" of wood chips in aluminum foil with the top open, on the side with the flames. Place the brisket on the side without the flame. Check every 20 minutes or so, and add additional wood chips to keep smoking consistently.
  7. Place the mushrooms and carrot slices in a vacuum seal bag with the sherry, olive oil, the remaining thyme, and a dash of salt and pepper. Vacuum seal the bag. Raise the sous vide temperature to 180° F, then place the bag in the water. Cover with ping-pong balls and cook for 1 hour.
  8. While this is happening, return the pot with the onions to a medium heat, and add the wine and the retained beef juices. Scrape the bottom of the pot if needed to blend in the leavings of the bacon and the sauteing. Lower heat to a simmer for 30 minutes with the top off (I added that last sentence after tasting too much residual alcohol from the wine the way I made it).
  9. Remove the smoked brisket from the grill. Cut into chunks and add to the cook pot. Add finished mushrooms and carrots to the cook pot along with any juices from the bag. Cook for 20 minutes or until desired consistency is reached.
  10. Serve with farro or other grain.

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