Brisket In Crab Boil

Tom Fitzmorris October 10, 2014 10:01

[dropcap1]Q. [/dropcap1]I heard you talking on the radio about your dislike of lobsters boiled with crab boil. I agree with you that it just doesn't work. But a few years ago I tried adding some crab boil to beef brisket and found that it made an interesting version of boiled beef. It also worked well with pre-boiling beef for a Texas-style BBQ whole brisket that is finished on the grill with sauce. Do I have your approval? [dropcap1]A. [/dropcap1]First of all, this quarter doesn't dispense approvals for what other people eat--just what my taste is on the matter, without suggesting that it ought to be adopted widely. (I don't know why I have to state that, but the way some people get indignant about this sort of thing compels me to do so now and then.) A fellow barbershop singer told me some years ago that when you boil a corned beef with a little bit of crab boil, it comes out exceptionally good. That absolutely did prove true. You couldn't pick out the crab boil flavor at all. It only registered as a more interesting flavor in the beef. I imagine the same would be true with an uncorned brisket. I would, however, keep the additive small--a tablespoon for a flat brisket, two or three for whole briskets (depending on size), simmered in a big pot of water with the usual seasoning vegetables. [caption id="attachment_40334" align="alignnone" width="480"]Boiled beef brisket. Boiled beef brisket.[/caption] Come to think of it, I encountered this back in the early 1990s, from the hand of Chef Paul Prudhomme. He cheffed the closing supper for the Napa Wine Auction that year, and served exactly that: brisket (as well as shrimp and sausage and onions) all boiled in crab boil. It was so good that his big rolling kitchen dispensed everything it had very quickly.[divider type=""]

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