Sunday, November 13, 2011

Briskets and Gravy.

As much as I love to grill and smoke meats, I am not one of those extreme die hards who are out there in any type of weather manning the grill and/or smoker.  What a quandry though when you are craving a good brisket, but don't want to deal with the cold weather outside.  That's where the crock pot comes in and becomes a best friend; always willing to help out and never complaininng.

After defrosting a four pound beef brisket and trimming excess fat off; I gave it a good massage with my All Purpose Rub. Sealing it inside an airtight container and popping it into the refrigerator, the preparations for Funeral Potatoes was begun. I didn't have any corn flakes on hand though, so a nice layer of shredded sharp cheddar cheese became my topping. Covered with plastic wrap, into the refrigerator that went to keep the brisket company overnight.

Next morning I got the crock pot out; the brisket went inside with all the other ingredients needed. I knew that the onions, tomatoes, chilies and garlic would not just help enhance the flavor of the brisket, but tenderize and moisturize. The rub on the brisket would help season those ingredients also, so the resulting gravy would be awe inspiring.

That evening I knew when Roy would be coming home from work, so I put the Funeral Potatoes in the oven, so they would be ready at the same time as the brisket and gravy. Result? Between the "Hmmm's" and "Oh my's", Roy was able to tell me that this was one of the best meals he'd ever enjoyed. The gravy was stupendous and the threat to eat a bowl of just that was made; he absolutely could not believe how deliciously awesome it was. He kept telling me that the brisket just melted in his mouth, and I have to agree that it was the tenderest brisket I've ever eaten. The Funeral Potatoes were a perfect accompaniment; the flavors melding so well with the beef and gravy.

Ain't that a kicker though, a crock pot giving a grill a run for it's money.

Crock Pot Beef Brisket and Gravy


4-5 lb beef brisket, trimmed of fat
½ cup all purpose rub
1 (10.5 oz) can French onion soup plus ½ can water
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilies – mild
1 ½ Tbsp minced garlic
4 Tbsp flour

Thoroughly coat, and massage in, all sides of brisket with rub; place in airtight plastic container or bag and refrigerate overnight.

Set 6 qt crock pot on low; spray inside with nonstick cooking spray. Place soup, water, tomatoes and garlic in crock pot; whisk in flour until incorporated well. Immerse brisket into liquid, cover and cook for 8 hours.

Remove brisket to rest before slicing. Set crock pot to high; using an immersion blender in the crock pot, or placing liquid into stand blender, puree tomatoes and onions. Let pureed liquid cook for 15 minutes to thicken. Serve over sliced brisket; also good for a gravy over mashed potatoes and/or biscuits.

Makes 8-10 servings.

Mary Cokenour

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