If you’re cooking on a budget – and who isn’t these days - this recipe for Braised Derrynaflan Brisket from The Irish Countrywomen’s Association Cookbook could be just what you need to warm up a cold winter’s evening. It comes courtesy of ICA member Lily Barrett, from Tipperary, who loves cooking, dancing and volunteering.
My local butcher always had the best brisket, a cheap cut that really delivers on flavour. My mother’s hotpot recipe is a great winter dish. I have been cooking it for over 40 years and renamed it after an ancient chalice that was found on Derrynaflan Island, Co Tipperary.
• 700g (1.5lb) brisket of beef, boned and rolled
• 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
• 1 tablespoon margarine
• 1 onion, chopped finely
• 4 medium carrots
• 4 medium leeks
• 250ml (½ pint) chicken stock
• 2 bay leaves
• 1 sprig of thyme
• ½ glass white wine
• 1 tablespoon cornflour
• 1–2 tablespoons sour cream (optional) to serve
• baked potatoes
• 2 handfuls grated cheddar cheese (optional)
• 2 handfuls cress (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 190ºC/375ºF/Gas 5.
2. In a flameproof casserole, heat the oil and margarine and brown the brisket well all over. Add the onion, cover and cook on a gentle heat for 10 minutes before transferring to preheated oven. After 45 minutes, add the carrots, leeks, stock and herbs, and continue cooking for another hour.
3. Transfer the brisket to warmed serving dish and remove the string. Remove the vegetables from the casserole with slotted spoon and arrange around the brisket.
4. Strain the cooking liquid into a small saucepan, add the wine and boil fast for five minutes. Blend the cornflour to a smooth paste in a couple of tablespoons of water, stirring out any for lumps, and add this gradually to the sauce to thicken to desired consistency. You may not need to add all the cornflour paste. Cook for another few minutes and finish with sour cream, to taste. Pour over the meat or into a sauceboat to serve separately.
5. Serve the brisket, vegetables and sauce with baked potatoes stuffed with grated cheddar cheese and topped with cress.
The Irish Countrywomen’s Association Cookbook is now available from Gill & Macmillan Bookshop.