It is hard to believe that yet another year has passed and that Passover is around the corner. Pesach is always the holiday that evokes in me an internal battle. It seems like so much hard work for just 8 days and yet it is supposed to be a time of cleansing, and liberation. I try each year to focus harder on the spiritual uplifting message of Pesach rather than on the hard work that is involved in preparing for this holiday. Some days are easier than other and little things always help this process. Yesterday I was privileged to attend a wonderful class by our rebbetsin, Chani Silverman, in which she spoke of the “miracle” of the Exodus from Egypt, G-d led the Jews from Slavery to Freedom at a time where the Jewish people had really reached an all-time low in their lives, and in their conduct. She reminded me yet again of the beauty of this holiday being that it serves as each of our personal liberation from the constraints of our every day lives. Today I studied further with our Rabbi, Rabbi Ephraim Silverman, and he reinforced this concept and reminded us that when we focus our lives on learning and understanding the deeper meaning in things, we are able to get beyond the need for self, and the focus on self only. By doing so and focusing on others and giving of oneself to other people or causes, we free ourselves from the constraints that limit us and pull us down.This together with the fact that the holiday takes place in Spring, the season where everything comes back to life, nature awakens and there is a completely new, uplifting energy after the cold, lifeless winter, has to make us believe and realize that beyond the hard work of Pesach, there is a much deeper message.
In this spirit of feeling inspired, I have been trying some new Passover recipes to inspire all you good cooks out there. I am not going to post them all in one blog, but I will keep posting for the next couple of weeks. Today, I am going to include my modified Brisket in Ginger ale and later this week will be my Ground Turkey and Eggplant meat loaf with mushroom sauce. Coming soon will be a chicken with apricot and date sauce, minute steaks, and some side dishes too. So go ahead and place your orders for meat and at the same time check out what grocery items they have left at www.grillerspride.com and get inspired to start cooking and preparing for Passover. Most my meat dishes can be made in advance, frozen and reheated on the night of seder or for any other meal.
The first recipe, the brisket in Ginger ale sauce was inspired by my husband, Peter, president of grillerspride.com. He brought in a new imported 1st cut brisket which he wanted me to try out so that he could tell customers if it was good or not. I developed a new, easier brisket in ginger ale sauce recipe, and tried it out a few times and finally served it for Shabbos dinner. My guests said it was absolutely delicious and I was told it is worthy of putting up on the blog.
Brisket with Caramelized Onions in a Ginger Ale Sauce
4 -5 lb. 1st cut brisket
2 large Spanish or Yellow onions
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 packet onion soup or 4 Tbs. onion soup powder (Telma ,Goodmans, or Osem)
salt and pepper
24 oz. ginger ale (if you cannot find Kosher for Passover ginger ale, available in 12 oz. cans, you can use coke instead and add more fresh ginger)
1 cup ginger flavored Duck Sauce
1 cup ketchup
6 chunks of fresh ginger, peeled
Heat Olive oil in a skillet, when hot add sliced onions.
Cook until well caramelized. When ready place them in a silver foil container and cover the bottom of the container with the onions. Place some ginger chunks on the onions.
Meanwhile rinse the brisket in cold water. Place on a plate and season one size with salt and pepper. Place seasoned side down on the onions.
Sprinkle the onion powder over the top of the brisket.
Mix the remaining ingredients, the ginger ale,ginger chunks, ketchup and the Duck sauce, and pour it over the brisket.
Place uncovered in a 350°F oven and cook for 3 hours. Turn the meat after the first hour to hour and a half. when meat starts to brown, after about 2 to 2 and a half hours, cover with aluminum foil to avoid burning.Remove from oven and let rest, covered, for 15 minutes.
Remove meat and slice against the grain into thin slices.
Place slices back in sauce.
At this point you can freeze the brisket and defrost and heat it, covered, at 350°F for 40 minutes, or you can heat it covered for 30 minutes when ready to serve.