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Just Right For The First Night Of Hanukkah: Joan’s Brisket


I asked my Jewish webmaster, John, to send some tips on Hanukkah foods. I found out that my salted chocolate clusters with fruit & nuts are good for Hanukkah. (Those are on this site).

John also told me: ” Hanukkah is a relatively small holiday that get’s a lot of attention because it relates to Christmas. And what kid wouldn’t want 8 gifts! A lot of the recipes are fried in oil. To signify the miracle of the oil burning for eight days. Latkes, donuts, And oil or not…always Brisket!”

Interestingly, John said one of his favorite food sites (besides Abouteating- hah!) is the New York Times. Oh my gosh, it’s mine, too! Their tested recipes are doable and oh so good. So anyway, I’m sharing a  new brisket recipe from Joan Nathan. For more really yummy recipes, the Times has a special section on Hanukkah foods.  Check it out!



Joan Nathan's Brisket Photo

Joan Nathan’s Brisket Photo

The result is sublime and the dish only improves if it’s cooked a day in advance of serving it. However, you can prepare and serve it the same day, if you’d like, though you may want to use a fat separator to strain the fat from the finished sauce. Several readers commented that the original cooking time and temperature on the recipe (3 hours, including 1 hour uncovered, at 350 degrees) was inaccurate. We’ve retested and adjusted the recipe, so the brisket now cooks for 5 to 6 hours, covered, at 325 degrees. Please also note that this recipe is not kosher for Passover.


  • 1 first-cut brisket, 6 to 7 pounds, rinsed and patted thoroughly dry
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled, cut into chunks
  • 6 large cloves garlic
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ¼ cup Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely ground pepper, or to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 ½ cups Coca-Cola or ginger ale
  • ½ cup olive oil


  1. Let meat stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking. Heat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Place everything but the soda, olive oil and brisket into a food processor, and process with steel blade until smooth. Pour the mixture into a large bowl and whisk in soda and olive oil.
  3. Place brisket, fat side up, into a heavy baking pan just large enough to hold it, and pour sauce over it. Cover tightly and bake for 3 hours. Turn brisket over, cover pan, and bake 2 to 3 hours more or until fork-tender. Cool, cover brisket and refrigerate overnight in cooking pan.
  4. The next day, transfer brisket to a cutting board, cut off fat and slice with a sharp knife against grain, to desired thickness. Set meat aside. Remove any congealed fat from sauce and bring to a boil on top of stove.
  5. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Taste sauce to see if it needs reducing. If so, boil it down for a few minutes or as needed. Return meat to sauce and warm in oven for 20 minutes. Serve warm.


Permanent link to this article: http://abouteating.com/just-right-for-the-first-night-of-hanukkah-joans-brisket/

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