|Rosh Hashanah traditions|
|By Ida Bochner Brown|
|Friday, 31 August 2012 16:41|
| Family’s brisket recipe is a keeper |
HOPCATONG, N.J. – I grew up in the Elmwood area of Providence, which had a large Jewish population. Temple Beth Israel, a Conservative synagogue, stood in the middle of the residential area on Niagara Street. The synagogue was within two blocks of our house, and I recall walking there for services, Hebrew school, Sunday school and the other activities we attended. Back in the late 1950s and early 1960s, no one worried about walking through the neighborhood at any time of day or night.
My late mother Celia was very active in the synagogue and served as its Sisterhood president. Friends often stopped in to our home to visit, and visitors were even more frequent during the High Holidays.
For several days before Rosh Hashanah, Mom would prepare a feast that would be laid out buffet style for all who stopped by to enjoy. Our home was a resting place during the break between services. People would come by to eat and rest before returning for afternoon services. Our front door was like a restaurant’s revolving door. Food was plentiful and fortunately never ran out!
The Rosh Hashanah evening meal, however, was the best! Matzah ball soup, kasha varnishkes, sweet and sour meatballs, stuffing, brisket with roasted carrots and potatoes and fresh challah. My dad Sam would take the credit for the brisket’s being cooked to perfection! The sauce was mouth-watering and the brisket was perfectly sliced to serve on a platter.
Family and friends squeezed into the dining room to participate in our celebration of the New Year.
Although my mother died in 1989, we celebrated the High Holidays each year with my father until hs death in 2001. Sometimes he came to visit us in New Jersey, and other times we visited Rhode Island; regardless of the venue, the meal was always the same.
I am pleased to say my husband Tom and I prepare and serve the same the meal each and every New Year! We invite friends to join us, and we continue to “squeeze in” and celebrate with the same customs that began so many years ago on Atlantic Avenue. Although we look forward to the entire meal, the brisket is the highlight that will always remind us of my parents.
As the New Year approaches, we hold all the family members who have left us close in our hearts. When we light our candles of remembrance, we treasure their memory. We know they are all smiling down on us and inscribing us in the book of life!
I am sharing my family’s recipe for brisket with the readers of The Jewish Voice & Herald! May it make your New Year sweet and your celebration with family and friends a treasured event.
2 cans (14-ounce can) of JELLIED cranberry sauce
2 packages onion soup mix
4-5 pound whole brisket
3-4 pounds potatoes
2 pounds carrots
Salt and pepper
Lawry’s seasoning salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Empty both cans of cranberry sauce into large bowl. Mash the sauce with a fork until it has a jellylike consistency.
Add 2 packages of onion soup mix, and mix thoroughly.
Add both 14-ounce cans of cold water and blend well.
Set this mixture aside.
Wash the brisket and pat dry.
Season both sides of the brisket with seasonings – salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and Lawry’s seasoning salt.
Put the brisket in a large baking pan that is deep enough to contain the gravy.
Wash and peel the potatoes and cut them into large chunks.
Wash and peel the carrots and cut them into 2-inch chunks.
Scatter the vegetables around the sides of the brisket in the baking pan.
Pour most of the cranberry sauce mixture atop the brisket – to give the brisket a delicious flavor – and pour the rest of it onto the vegetables.
Tightly cover the pan with aluminum foil so no steam will escape during the cooking process.
Put pan in preheated oven and let brisket mixture cook for 4 or 4-and-1/2 hours. DO NOT OPEN oven or touch the pan during the first 4 hours.
Then check to see if the brisket is fork tender. If not, cook for another 30 minutes.
Remove from oven and put the meat on a carving board. Allow it to cool for 10 – 15 minutes before cutting.
Slice the brisket against – not with – the grain and place slices on a platter.
Place the roast vegetables in a bowl with some gravy or directly on the platter with the brisket.
Fill a gravy boat with extra gravy, as your guests will definitely want extra to pour on their brisket.