Chicken pox is a highly contagious virus. Chicken saladitis, while not as lethal or infectious, is no less noxious, inserting itself into lunch menus on an almost daily basis.
During the week, I bring my lunch to work. And making a week’s worth of chicken salad is almost always the easiest and quickest option. On Sunday nights, with the weekend fading, and my thoughts turning to the approaching Monday, I often grab two chicken breasts, brush them with olive oil, toss them in the oven, and a short time later, pronounce lunch made.
But week after week, and chicken salad grows dull. There are only so many different ways to dress it up. And in the end, it’s still chicken salad. To fight the scourge of chicken saladits, I suggest:
Pulled brisket sandwiches
Recipe adapted from Epicurious.
PREP TIME: 20 minutes
COOK TIME: 4 hours
YIELD: Serves 6 to 8
WHAT TO GRAB:
A 4-pound boneless beef brisket, trimmed of excess fat
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large red onions, halved lengthwise, and thinly sliced
2 bay leaves
12 ounces of bottled beer (but not dark)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
HOW YOU DO IT:
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Pat the brisket dry, and liberally sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large and wide heavy pot over moderately high heat until the oil is hot but not smoking. Brown the meat well on all sides, about 10 minutes total. Once browned, transfer to a 13 x 9 baking dish.
3. Toss the onions and bay leaves in the fat remaining in the pot. Cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden, about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the heat.
4. Scatter the onions all around the brisket in the baking dish. Add the beer and vinegar (the liquid should come about halfway up the sides of meat). Add more beer if necessary.
5. Cover with foil and braise in the middle of oven until the meat is very tender, about 3 1/2 hours. Cool in sauce, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
6. Once cool, pull apart the brisket, discarding any fat. Cover the baking dish, and cook the brisket in the onions and sauce for another 30 minutes. Serve on sandwiches, or on tacos!