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19th Century Brisket

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gracoman View Drop Down
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    Posted: 11 July 2019 at 09:07
I read food historian Michael W. Twitty's book "The Cooking Gene - A Journey Through African Culinary History in the Old South". Not many recipes but a lot of BBQ history there. I've always found cultural foodways interesting so this stuff is right up my alley. Especially the spices. Always the spices.

This brisket is a general early to mid 19th century Virginia bbq recipe pulled from the Townsends episode  "Food of the Enslaved: Barbecue, featuring Michael Twitty" 

Mushroom Ketchup would have been used rather than Worcestershire, but we're already familiar with that stuff aren't we.  I am using the more complex mop/sauce discussed in the video, not because added moisture is necessary, but to create a flavor profile closer to the original. I've known about kitchen pepper for quite some time but never before used it as a rub. This recipe has African, Caribbean and German (that's where the familiar mustard originates) influences and I'm excited to try it.
 
Brisket is prepped, rubbed and on the smoker. If you look closely you will see a few whole cloves stuck in the fat. I'm starting this brisket fat side down so more cloves aren't visible Neither is the sliced garlic but they are there.


The 19th century mop/sauce I made from the video description, the Wesley Jones sauce, is phenomenal. Good enough for me to replace my favorite Carolina vinegar sauce with. The one I personally prefer for pulled pork sandwiches. I do make a mean mustard based sauce for pulled pork but, for me, vinegar sauce has always been the way to go if I'm using any sauce at all. So let me run through this.

The ingredient amounts are up to you. It is all to taste. Many, if not all, 18th and 19th century recipes are written like this.

Keep the red peppers to a minimum if you aren't looking for a lot of heat.

Wesley Jones (19th Century BBQ Pitmaster) Vinegar Mop and finishing Sauce
-Sauteed onions and garlic. I sauteed these in butter as I believe it would be more authentic (whatever that means) and because butter
-Salt
-dried basil
-dried sage
-black pepper
-kitchen pepper (Twitty's recipe below)
-crushed red pepper
-ground coriander
Let these ingredients cook together for a while to marry and develop
-Apple cider vinegar
-molasses. Probably more than you think you need.
Simmer for a few minutes

Michael Twitty's Kitchen Pepper
Mix equal parts:
-Coarsely ground black pepper
-White pepper
-Crushed red pepper flakes
-Ceylon cinnamon
-Nutmeg
-allspice
-ground ginger
-A secret ingredient that I will not include here as it break copy write laws so just double the nutmeg as a substitute

Store in a cool place
Use on everything

This brisket is done


If your interested in this sort of thing visit Michael Twitty's blog "Afroculinaria"
There are some interesting things there.
Take fer instance this Apple Barbecue Sauce

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Wannabebwana Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 July 2019 at 10:11
Oh, my...

That looks fabulous!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gracoman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 July 2019 at 14:55
It is a great recipe for all types of BBQ. Kitchen pepper as a rub?  Who'd a thunk. 

I don't believe I've ever been disappointed in any 19th or even 18th century dishes I've made.  But dat sauce... that spiced vinegar and molasses sauce is to die for.  I've never used a vinegar sauce with beef before. A keeper for sure.
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Margi Cintrano View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Margi Cintrano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2019 at 05:28

Truly an exceptional read and gorgeous photographs. 

Enjoy and have fabulous summer.  Thank you for posting this.

I am pescatarian however, stopped eating red meat a long time ago.  However, brisket is a truly lovely classic ..  

Brook ( Historic  Foodie ) needs to see this !  He is quite an expert on Brisket and Hoser and Tas too. 

It is not a simple cut of beef to obtain here in Spain, however, it is quite common amongst Jewish communities in France, England, Germany, The Netherlands and Israel.  

I had seen a very good film many years ago, and the leading male actor prepared a Brisket for a Jewish Holiday.  And it looked amazing ..  It was the film where an Israeli young man was hired by the Israeli Government to kill the murderers (terrorists)  of the Israeli Olympic Team.   Excellent film ..  

Have a very lovely summer and enjoy that Brisket !!!



  


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gracoman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2019 at 20:10
Margi, in the world of BBQ, brisket seems to be the gold standard by which pitmaster skills (or lack of) are judged.  Personally, I don't get it.  Brisket is not my favorite cut by a long shot.  Not even the prime brisket pictured above. 

That said, I've made it pretty clear here that I'm 98%+ plant based.  No meat, eggs, dairy, or cheese.  I break this occasionally.  Sometimes as often as one meal each week.  So I know quite a bit about what a healthy diet actually is.  

If you have gone pescatarian for health reasons that's just plain silly.  Muscle is muscle, cholesterol is cholesterol and animal fat is animal fat.   Doctors aren't even recommending fish oil anymore.  Get yer Omega 3's elsewhere.

Because of what we have done to the oceans, I'd stay away from fish.  Not trying to start an argument here but after years of continuous study, that is my point of view.

You certainly don't have to accept it.





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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Wannabebwana Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 July 2019 at 06:25
As I said in another thread, I don’t judge anyone else’s food choices, so long as they don’t judge mine.

Having said that, I was thinking about this last night when I saw a restaurant advertising “wild caught cod filets”, since, apparently, for fish wild caught is better than fish-farmed (or “farm-raised”).

By the same token, some people are appalled knowing I eat “wild caught” (hunted) venison, grouse, moose, rabbit, instead preferring their “farm-raised” beef, chicken etc.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gracoman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 July 2019 at 10:00
Judging and pointing out inaccuracies are different things. 

My diet is judged daily, by everyone around me, including forums like this one.  So I usually keep quiet about it unless I see or hear inaccuracies.  If I kept quiet I would be on the side of big food business and big pharmacy. You know, the meat, salt, sugar, dairy, oil, egg and pharmacological industries. 

These industries mostly don't care what you eat either. i say mostly because they certainly will care if you stop eating their products. The medical industry doesn't care either. Poor health is good for business.  Western doctor's offices are little more than pharmacy outlets. 

As an small example, let's look at this Political Lesson on the Power of the Food industry.

I've been at this for a very long time.  It gladdens my heart that the rest of the world is finally figuring it out.  There is a growing world movement.  Mostly, not for reason of health mind you.  That is just icing in the cake.  Climate change is perhaps the real driving force behind this growing world wide trend.  Of course there are other reasons but this is the one that may have shown the spotlight in the right direction.

The connection between climate change and livestock production is, to my mind, indisputable.  The connection between water usage and livestock production is, to my mind, indisputable.  If you are a person of science you know this to be true.  If you have politicized the "possibility" that humans are driving this change than you will believe climate change is natural and our greenhouse gas production has nothing to do with it.

Anywho, wild caught is always better.  I don't believe we can still say that about fish.  I've read that no amount of ocean caught fish should be consumed. It is all contaminated.  Some species more than others but all is contaminated to some degree. And some toxins, mercury for example, are not excreted by the human body.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Margi Cintrano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 July 2019 at 15:44


Gracoman,

I have always been veered toward wild shellfish, CLAMS AND OYSTERS ON THE HALF SHELL, OCTOPUS, SQUID (SEPPIA)  & CALAMAR AND THE BRETAGNE (BRITTANY)  CREVETTES CALLED CARABIÑEROS IN SPANISH, AND PRAWNS  and  wild fresh Scottish Salmon.  

I eat very very little red meat and if I do it is ecological ..  

It is more of true distaste for the way livestock suffer under the hands of the unscrupulous .. 

None the less, we live in entire different parts of the world with totally different regulations, laws, foods, cultures, and traditions.  SPAIN AND ITALY ARE BECOMING THE LARGEST PRODUCERS OF ECOLOGICAL WINES, FRUITS, VEGGIES, MEATS AND PRACTICALLY ALL.  

PEOPLE HERE DO NOT WANT GMOs AND UN-NATURAL FOODS FROM THE GMO INDUSTRIALISTS. 

ALOT OF FOODS ARE THROWN AWAY AS THE MARKETS CANNOT SELL THIS ..  PEOPLE HERE ARE READING LABELS ..  THEY ARE ASKING QUESTIONS.  

Farm fisheries provide a diet of Bayer Monsanto anti bioditics to these schools of farmed fish, and there is NO AROMA AND NO TASTE.  I do not like most White Fish.

Wild Red Band Bream called  " urta roteña " is a rock fish off the coast of Rota, Cadiz, and there is no finned  fish comparable ..  When my fish monger gets a couple from Cádiz, he calls me .. I run over to pick them up !  It is truly divine. 

THE E.U. IS STOPPING ALL PLASTIC SOFT DRINKS .. THEY SHALL NOT SELL IN PLASTIC AFTER THE NEW YEAR.  ALSO, ALL PRODUCE ( VEGGIES AND FRUITS ) SHALL NOT BE SOLD IN PLASTIC.

THERE ARE NO SUPERMARKETS WITH PLASTIC BAGS AFTER  1 / 1 / 2020  !!!!  

THERE ARE ENORMOUS CONCERNS FOR THE OCEAN LIFE AND FORESTS AND ITS INHABITANTS. THEY ARE TRAINING THE MIGRANTS TO CLEAN THE BEACHES, FORESTS, LAKES, RIVERS ETCETRA IF THEY WANT TO STAY IN THE E.U. THEN THEY MUST BE USEFUL EMPLOYEES ..   RECYCLING IS BIG HERE AND  RUBBISH IS SEPARATED .. 

We are grand supporters of  our land and seas here.  We must stop the death of our wildlife.  Thousands of animals have died due to plastic bags thrown in the wáter ways ..  seals, dolphins, whales, sea turtles etcetra. 


Best wishes. 

So,  have a wonderful summer and enjoy your free time off .. 

Have a nice weekend. 



 



Volamos a Mediterraneo, un paraiso que conquista su gente u su cocina.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gracoman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 July 2019 at 10:48
Folks who restrict their personal diets do it for one or both of the following reasons:
-Saving yourself - Health
-Saving the animals - Prevent animal cruelty

We could add save the planet but that is a subcategory of save yourself.  Realistically, the planet will be fine.  A lot of species may be on the brink of extinction, ourselves included, but the planet will be just fine.

Life is a messy business.  Animals kill each and eat each other all the time.  Sapiens just happen to be better at finding calories than other animals.  That is why we are currently running the show here.  That said, the jury is still out on whether or not "intelligence" is a viable biological option.

I went plant based for reasons of health.  It's not complicated. I want to be as disease free as much as possible.  I want to stay off of pharmaceuticals.  I want to retain my faculties and I want to hold on to my ability to move.  Diet may be king but exercise is queen.

The other reason for restricting one's diet is what I refer to as political.  It is taking a stand against animal cruelty and the willful destruction of our environment.  This is more difficult because it is outside of our personal control. Powerful forces are at work here so stopping these things is not possible.  One may chose not to participate, as much as one can do that, but one can never stop it.  That requires a world-wide change in values.  Difficult when the forces that run things value nothing but the all mighty dollar. 

Its good to hear Spain and the rest of the European Union are somewhat onboard but these are baby steps.  The rest of the world needs the get with the program.  Rain forests are still falling, human populations are still growing, waste is still dumped into the oceans, and poverty is epidemic.  It's difficult to care about the rain forests when you're starving.

It's interesting that we have the power to feed the entire world right now.  Right now today.  But we won't do it.  We'd rather throw food away than give it away.  Heck, here in the good ol US of A, many places have laws against feeding the homeless.  Laws against feeding hungry people.  Laws.

Margi, I understand and very much appreciate your point of view.  You don't eat red meat for political reasons. Animal cruelty.  But from where I sit, avoiding red meat for reasons of animal cruelty while still eating poultry, eggs and/or pork makes no sense.  That is if you still eat those things.  Poultry/egg production is every bit as brutal as livestock production.  Even more so.  Male chicks are thrown into grinders at birth.  Makes good chicken feed for the hens.

GMO's aren't going away anytime soon. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Margi Cintrano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 July 2019 at 11:00
Gracoman, 

I do not eat poultry at all.   Iberian Jabugo Air dried Pata Negra  or Dehuesa, Badajoz Pata Negra Aged Ham on rare occasion. 

Eggs:  They are an ingredient in fresh pasta !  

So, yes however, if I buy verses eat out in Italy, I buy ecological eggs, no cages and naturally fed etcetra ..  i also buy ecological Pasta made in Italia only. Never Canadian.  They burn it in Italy and Hungary amongst other E.U. Countries. 

 No one wants false pasta in Italia  !!!!  

However, what you have stated, I am aware of ..   I do what I think is the best for me. 

And yes, I go to the gym 4 or 5 times a week, and always have gone to the gym no matter where I have lived around the world,  and food combine cautiously as well.  

I am pleased there are Americans like Actor Morgan Freeman who has dedicated thousands of acres of his OWN land to produce  ecological honey.  To revive the bumble bee population .. 

I wish you a wonderful summer and all my best wishes.  

Good luck with your brisket ..





  
Volamos a Mediterraneo, un paraiso que conquista su gente u su cocina.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gracoman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 July 2019 at 16:14
Originally posted by Margi Cintrano Margi Cintrano wrote:

 
 No one wants false pasta in Italia  !!!!   

LOL
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