Ranch Brisket of Beef Sandwiches

Wine Commentary by Gary Twining

Ranch Brisket of Beef Sandwiches

Meltingly tender beef brisket, slow-cooked to perfection and smothered in a sweet and tangy straight-from-the-ranch BBQ sauce, is even better on the second day. It’s a great make-ahead meal.

1 beef brisket (about 2 lb)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup molasses
1/2 cup ketchup
1 TBS brown sugar
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
2 TBS vegetable or canola oil
2 TBS yellow mustard
2 TBS strong coffee
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp hot sauce
Sandwich or submarine buns, toasted

Preheat oven to 325°F. In a large saucepan, stir together water, molasses, ketchup, brown sugar, cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, oil, mustard, coffee, salt, pepper and hot sauce. Cook over medium high heat until boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Place brisket in a 9 x 13 pan. Pour sauce over brisket. Cover tightly with foil. Bake in oven 3-1/2 hours, turning brisket over halfway through cooking time. Cut brisket into thin slices. Skim fat from sauce and serve with beef on toasted sandwich or submarine buns. Serves 4.

Gary: With the sweetness of the molasses, acidity of the vinegar and heat, look for red wines without too much earthiness and moderate alcohol, softer astringencies (tannins) and a hint of ripe, almost sweet fruit. Zinfandel immediately comes to mind due to its fruit character, as does Côtes du Rhône, a supple Malbec or Shiraz, and some of the wines from Southern Italy with their ripe, dark fruit and firm acidity. A soft Dornfelder might also please your palate. If you want to try a Rosé find one with a hint of sweetness, such as from Anjou in France’s Loire River Valley.

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