THIS week’s recipe is a terrific way to use the much underused and inexpensive brisket of beef to conjure a snack that will outshine all others, the pickles complementing the sweet, sticky, slowcooked beef perfectly. Better still, serve it at a party and you’ll be the talk of the town. If brisket isn’t to your taste or you could use leftover meat of your choice in the same way for an equally outstanding result.
BEEF JAM ON SOURDOUGH TOAST WITH PICKLES Serves 4
100ml vegetable oil 1kg beef brisket 2 banana shallots 300ml red wine vinegar 125ml maple syrup 100ml soya sauce 500ml chicken stock 15g cornflour 50ml sherry vinegar 1 sourdough loaf 100ml sour cream A jar of pickled gherkins Set the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas mark 4.
Heat the vegetable oil in a saucepan big enough to hold the brisket. Season the brisket well with table salt and place it into the hot pan, searing on all sides until dark brown.
Whilst the brisket is searing peel and slice the banana shallots.
Once the brisket is brown on all sides remove it from the pan and place it on a plate to one side.
In the pan the brisket was seared in, reduce the heat slightly and add the shallots, cooking gently without colouring until translucent. Add the red wine vinegar and maple syrup and reduce the liquid over a high heat by three-quarters. Add the soya sauce and chicken stock before returning the brisket to the pan. Cover with a lid or greaseproof paper and place it in the oven for three hours or until the brisket is tender and falling apart.
Once the brisket is cooked transfer it from the pot on to a plate and let it cool slightly before shredding with two forks into small pieces.
Return the cooking liquor to the heat and bring it to the boil. Mix the cornflour with 10ml of water and whisk the paste into the liquor. Once the liquor is thickened remove it from the heat and add the shredded brisket. Season well with salt and fresh pepper and add the sherry vinegar before reserving to one side and keeping warm.
Slice the sourdough bread into eight pieces around 2cm thick and toast until golden. Top the bread with the sour cream and add a generous spoonful of the beef. Slice the pickled gherkins and place on top of the beef then serve.