If you’re reading this and you watched the show, please give me your favorite moments! (I already know Lady Gaga showed up encased in an egg.)
The Grammys aren’t my favorite awards show, since it’s the Oscars and Globes that really float my boat, so I wasn’t all that crushed about missing it. Besides, Michael and I had a date with friends to make dinner here and watch a screener of the prize-winning documentary “When I Rise.”
The feature-length doc tells the story – much of it in her own words – of Barbara Smith Conrad, a black music student at the University of Texas in the late ’50s, just after the school had been desegregated, who had been barred from performing in the drama department’s opera production. The movie describes how she overcame prejudice and forged a career as an international opera star. Very moving and inspirational and highly recommended.
Also recommended was the brisket Michael cooked yesterday, giving it 24 hours for the flavors to really get going. Wow. Was it ever good. He used a recipe from Tyler Florence from the Food Network.
- 4 large garlic cloves, smashed
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary, needles striped from the stem and chopped
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 (4 pound) beef brisket, first-cut
- Coarsely ground black pepper
- 4 large carrots, cut in 3-inch chunks
- 3 celery stalks, cut in 3-inch chunks
- 4 large red onions, halved
- 2 cups dry red wine
- 1 (16-ounce) can whole tomatoes, hand-crushed
- 1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour (optional)
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
On a cutting board, mash the garlic and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt together with the flat-side of a knife into a paste. Add the rosemary and continue to mash until incorporated. Put the garlic-rosemary paste in a small bowl and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil; stir to combine.
Season both sides of the brisket with a fair amount of kosher salt and ground black pepper. Place a large roasting pan or Dutch oven over medium-high flame and coat with the remaining olive oil. Put the brisket in the roasting pan and searcrust on both sides. Lay the vegetables all around the brisket and pour the rosemary paste over the whole thing. Add the wine and tomatoes; toss in the parsley and bay leaves. Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil and transfer to the oven. Bake for about 3 to 4 hours, basting every 30 minutes with the pan juices, until the beef is fork tender. to form a nice brown
Remove the brisket to a cutting board and let it rest for 15 minutes. Scoop the vegetables out of the roasting pan and onto a platter, cover to keep warm. Pour out some of the excess fat, and put the roasting pan with the pan juices on the stove over medium-high heat. Boil and stir for 5 minutes until the sauce is reduced by 1/2. (If you want a thicker sauce, mix 1 tablespoon of flour with 2 tablespoons of wine or water and blend into the gravy).
Slice the brisket across the grain (the muscle lines) at a slight diagonal.
The sauce that results from this recipe is to die for. It comes out carmelized, like candy. I’m so glad we have leftovers. Oh, and I made my chocolate cake with gluten free flour for the first time, since our friends are wheat sensitive. It didn’t quite have the same consistency; the cake was more like a brownie – not a bad thing, just denser.
Anyhow, Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! May your day be full of romance.