This weekend marks the beginning of a period where most of your Jewish colleagues will be missing more than a few days of work, and I’m here to tell you that they’re not lying – there really are that many Jewish holidays in the fall. They’re what we call the High Holidays, starting with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, and 10 days later, Yom Kippur (AKA the Day of Atonement). Yom Kippur is the holiest of the holidays, and includes a day of fasting, which by my reckoning is the only Jewish holiday that doesn’t revolve around a dinner table heaving with food.
That’s where Rosh Hashanah comes in handy. Since this holiday marks the Jewish calendar’s new year, the meal is full of symbolic (and delicious) foods, such as apples dipped in honey, and honey cake, for a sweet new year, and round loaves of challah that symbolize the continuation of life.
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Enjoying fruit and vegetable-based dishes is a way of giving thanks for a successful harvest season.
Put them all together in one big, hearty dish and you’ve got yourself a classic Jewish brisket recipe, served with roasted carrots, noodle kugel, salad, and chicken soup, it’s the epitome of home cooking from the heart, for a sweet new year.
Here’s my recipe based on a classic one that’s been making the rounds since the 1950s, when diverse convenience foods magically combined to make brisket nirvana. Normally I wouldn’t be keen to use packaged soup mix or Coca-cola in a recipe, but in this case, a classic is always timely.
Amy’s beef brisket
1 5lb single brisket
1 cup Coca-Cola (not diet, not Zero, just Classic please)
1 cup apricot jam
1/2 cup tomato sauce (homemade or store bought)
1 packet dry onion soup mix, such as Lipton's
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp kosher salt
fresh cracked pepper to taste
1. Mix marinade ingredients together, pour over brisket in a roasting pan, cover with foil and refrigerate overnight. Or, if you don't have that much time to spare, several hours will do in a pinch.
2. When ready to cook, preheat oven to 325 F then cook covered brisket for 3 hours, then uncovered for an additional 1/2 hour. Let cool, then refrigerate (this aids in slicing). Skim any excess fat. When cooled, slice thinly against the grain and add back into pan with sauce.
3. About a half hour before you’re ready to serve, preheat oven to 350 F and reheat brisket for 20-30 minutes, spooning sauce over it a couple of times.
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