3 hours, 45 minutes
- 2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 1 Tbsp. paprika
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 1 (1.5 KG.) beef brisket, trimmed of some of its fat
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- 3 1⁄2 cups stock or water
- 1 (14 1/2-oz.) can chopped tomatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 medium yellow onions, peeled and thinly sliced
- 2 carrots sliced
- 1 leek sliced
- 2 stalks celery sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- Preheat oven to 200C.
- Combine salt, pepper, paprika, and cumin in a small bowl, then rub all over brisket.
- Heat oil in an ovenproof enameled cast-iron pot or other heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid, just large enough to hold brisket snugly, over medium-high heat.
- Add brisket to pot and brown on both sides, about 10 minutes per side.
- Transfer brisket to a platter.
- Add additional olive oil to the pot and sauté onions
- Add stock, tomatoes, garlic and bay leaves to pot and scrape any browned bits stuck to bottom of pot with a wooden spoon.
- Return brisket and any accumulated juices to pot Cover pot, transfer to oven, and braise brisket for 1 hour. Uncover pot and continue to braise brisket for 1 hour more.
- Check meat for tenderness by piercing center with tip of a sharp knife; it should slide in easily when fully cooked. Cover pot, return to oven, and continue to braise brisket, checking on tenderness of meat occasionally, until very tender when pierced, up to 2 hours more.
- Transfer brisket to a cutting board and loosely cover with foil.
- The onions and garlic in the pot should be very soft, and braising juices should be rich and saucy.
- Transfer pot to top of stove and simmer over medium heat until juices thicken, about 5 minutes.
- Slice brisket across the grain and transfer to a warm serving platter.
- Spoon gravy / juices on top. Discard bay leaves before serving
- (Alternatively blend the juices and vegetables with a stick blender to produce a smooth silky sauce)