Balsamic Braised Brisket With Shallots and Potatoes


1 (3 pound) brisket
fine sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
10 cloves fresh garlic, peeled, divided
3   tablespoons margarine, divided
2   tablespoons olive oil
3   Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
6   whole shallots, peeled
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup red wine
1 (14.5 ounce) of crushed tomatoes


Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  Season the brisket on both sides with salt and pepper. Using the tip of a sharp knife, cut shallow slits all along the brisket. Cut 5 of the garlic cloves in half. Place a piece of garlic into each slit. Place 2 tablespoons of the margarine and the oil into a large skillet or pot set over medium heat. When the margarine is melted and hot, add the meat. You should hear it sear on contact. Let cook for 8 minutes--don't move it around. After 8 minutes, lift the meat up, add 1 tablespoon margarine to the pan, and turn the meat over. Sear on the second side for 8 minutes. Remove the brisket to a baking pan. Surround the brisket with potatoes, shallots, and 5 whole cloves.
  Add balsamic vinegar and wine to the skillet or pan. Add the tomatoes. Turn the heat down to medium and cook for 5 minutes, stirring to combine. While the mixture cooks down, scrape up the browned bits from the pan; a wooden spoon works well here. Pour the balsamic mixture over brisket and vegetables. Add the water to just cover the brisket.
  Place in the oven and bake for 2- 2 1/2 hours, covered. Allow to cool before slicing.




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