Brisket is a cut of beef that is not well know at all in the Netherlands. Most of the brisket (“puntborst” in Dutch) is used to make a cold cut called “pekelvlees” (brined beef). Since Dutch beef is very lean and it is difficult to get ‘exotic’ cuts like brisket (yes it is that unknown around here) from imported beef, I had never before tried to cook brisket sous-vide as I didn’t have high expectations of a lean brisket cooked sous-vide. But after the success with a smoked leg of lamb finished sous-vide, I thought it would be interesting to try the same preparation on a piece of brisket. It turned out great: the brisket had the texture of a tender perfectly cooked medium-rare steak and a very interesting deep smoky flavor. Since I only used a small piece of brisket to try this the smoky flavor was a bit strong, but that will be easily remedied by using a larger pieces and/or a shorter smoking time. This is what sous-vide is about: by the low and slow cooking (48 hours at 57C/135F) the meat is tender without becoming dry, and the smoky flavor from the out layer has the time to penetrate into the core of the meat.
salt and freshly ground black pepper
extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp smoking dust
Let the brisket cool to room temperature and then refrigerate until completely cold. If the meat is still warm while you vacuum seal it, more juices will be drawn out.
Make a gravy by heating the bag juices. If you like you can add some concentrated beef stock as well.
This calls for a spicy oaky full-bodied red wine such as a cabernet sauvignon from California.