Slow cooking is a great way to experiment with different cuts of meat and you can always ask your butcher to recommend a cheaper or less well-known piece. This weekend I slow cooked beef brisket for the first time in a lovely rich beef stock with carrots, baby onions, celery, garlic, tomato puree, port and fresh herbs. The aromas in the kitchen were comforting and warming even before I peeked inside to see how it was getting on. In another first, I bought a celeriac, in season and on offer and made a really delicious celeriac mash to go with the beef stew. This would make a lovely alternative to a traditional Sunday roast. Since it can all be made in advance, if you are feeling brave, invite some friends over and serve this in big bowls with a bottle or two of red wine! You can also serve the brisket with noodles, gnocchi, or even rice.
I called my mum for this recipe, she had a few ideas up her sleeve when I mentioned beef brisket. It is a cut particularly suited to slow cooking because it can be a tough cut otherwise. If you didn’t have a slow cooker you could make a pot roast and cook it in the oven, instead. My piece was a rolled joint, which unravelled during cooking. In any case, the meat is so easy to thinly slice or even shred with a fork it didn’t really matter.
Slow Cooked Beef Brisket with Celeriac Mash and Wild Mushrooms
Beef brisket recipe from my mum
For the slow cooked beef brisket
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 4 carrots, peeled and chopped into chunks
- 2 sticks celery, peeled and chopped into chunks
- 6 baby onions or one whole onion, peeled and chopped into chunks
- 1 large clove or garlic, peeled
- 800g piece of beef brisket
- 250 ml/one cup port, or you can use red wine
- 2 tablespoons tomato puree
- 1 litre rich beef stock (I used 2 x Knorr rich beef stock pots)
- A handful of fresh parsley and thyme, roughly chopped
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
For the celeriac mash
- 1 large celeriac, peeled and chopped into chunks
- 1 large baking potato, peeled and chopped into chunks
- 80ml/ 1/3 cup double/heavy cream
- A small knob of butter
For the wild mushrooms
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 200 g fresh, wild mushrooms
- To make the beef brisket, heat one tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large frying pan. Fry the carrots, celery, onions and whole garlic clove for 4-5 minutes until they begin to take on some colour. Transfer the vegetables into your slow cooker or crock pot.
- Add the second tablespoon of vegetable oil to the same frying pan and put the beef brisket in, cook it for a few minutes on all sides until it takes on a brown colour. Transfer the beef brisket into your slow cooker or crock pot.
- Pour the port into the frying pan and let it bubble for a few seconds. Add the tomato puree, whisk or mix it together into a paste and then pour in the made up beef stock. Stir well and then pour the liquid into your slow cooker or crock pot. Add the fresh herbs, the beef should be covered with liquid. Season with sea salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper.
- Cook on high for 4-5 hours, the longer the better. If you don’t have a slow cooker, use a large casserole dish with a tight fitting lid and cook for 3-4 hours at 160 degreees Celsius/320 F.
- To make the celeriac mash, add the celeriac chunks and potato into a large pan, cover with water, bring to a boil and cook for twenty minutes until the celeriac is very soft. Drain, add the cream and butter and mash or puree with a hand blender.
- To make the wild mushrooms, heat the olive oil ad butter in a pan, add the mushrooms and fry for 2-3 minutes until golden.
- Once the brisket is cooked, carefully take it out of the cooking liquid, slice thinly or shred with a fork. Serve the beef with the vegetables and sauce with the celeriac mash and wild mushrooms on the side.
Some of the ingredients were sent to me to cook with by Forman and Field including the beef brisket, wild mushrooms, baby onions and port - with many thanks.
For the rest of the weekend, I am also running a competition in association with Knorr to win some of the ingredients to have a go yourself, or you could make Marco Pierre White’s beef bourguignon or a beef creation of your own.
Have you got any favourite slow cooker recipes? Let me know if you give this recipe a go!