Grocery Guide

What's Cooking This Week?

Happy Hanukkah (tomorrow)! This week, I'm going to impress my Jewish fiancé with a week-long (don't judge me for not going the full eight days) Hanukkah feast like he's never had before. Since he's been in grad school living off peanut butter and jelly for the past five years, it shouldn't be too hard.

Here's what I'm making:

  • Early Hanukkah Brisket w/ Balsamic Vegetables
  • Latkes, Sour Cream, & Homemade Applesauce
  • Grilled Brisket & Onion Challah Sandwiches w/ Horseradish Mayo
  • Lox & Latkes Benedict
  • Challah French Toast

    Pantry Items Olive oil (regular and extra virgin) Vegetable/canola oil Balsamic vinegar White wine vinegar Cooking spray Butter Flour Milk Sugar/light brown sugar Powdered sugar (optional for Challah French Toast) Honey Vanilla extract Maple syrup Low sodium chicken stock Eggs Mayonnaise Sour cream Prepared Horseradish Salt Pepper Baking powder Bay leaves Cinnamon Cayenne Pepper

    Grocery List based on servings for 2 w/ leftovers 1 3 lb beef brisket (top flap removed and fat trimmed) 4 oz lox/smoked salmon 1 red onion 1 plum tomato 8 oz cremini mushrooms 4 apples (any variety, Red Delicious are naturally sweet so less sugar can be used in applesauce) 5 large Yukon gold potatoes 2 large yellow onions 2 large carrots 2 celery stalks 1 bunch fresh thyme 1 head garlic 2-4 slices swiss cheese 1 loaf good Challah bread

    Day 1 - Early Hanukkah Brisket w/ Balsamic Vegetables *Takes 3-3½ hours in the oven. *Makes leftover beef for use in Grilled Brisket Sandwiches and leftover roast vegetables as a side for Homemade Latkes.

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

    Set a large roasting pan over high heat and coat with olive oil. Season the brisket generously with salt and pepper and add to pan, cooking until well-browned on both sides. Remove from pan and set aside.

    Reduce heat to medium. Add 1 sliced yellow onion, 2 thickly sliced carrots, 2 thickly sliced celery stalks, and halved mushrooms to pan, cooking until softened, about 5-6 minutes. Add 4-6 cloves chopped garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Stir in 2/3 cup balsamic vinegar and reduce by half. Season with salt and pepper.

    Lay browned brisket on top of vegetable mixture and add chicken stock until brisket is just covered. Add in thyme bundle and 2 bay leaves.

    Cover the pan with foil and bake for 3 to 3-1/2 hours until tender, turning over halfway through cooking and adding more stock if needed. Remove the foil for the last 30 minutes of cooking.

    Remove brisket and let rest for 20 minutes covered in foil. Remove excess fat from roasting pan and set over medium heat to reduce excess liquid.

    Carve brisket against the grain and drizzle with pan juices. Serve w/ roasted vegetables. *Reserve some brisket and vegetables for use in days 2 and 3.

    Day 2 - Latkes, Sour Cream, & Homemade Applesauce *Uses leftover vegetables *Makes extra Potato Latkes for Lox & Latkes Benedict and extra Applesauce for Challah French Toast

    Prepare homemade applesauce.

    Peel potatoes and immediately immerse in cold water to keep from browning.

    Shred potatoes and 1 yellow onion using a hand grater or food processor fitted with a grating blade. Squeeze excess water from shredded potato and onion mixture using a fine mesh strainer or towel.

    In large bowl, mix potatoes and onions with 1 egg, 2 tbsp flour, 1 tsp baking powder, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

    Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat and coat with vegetable or canola oil. Form potato latke patties and fry until golden-brown and crisp on both sides. Drain on paper towels before serving.

    Meanwhile, reheat leftover vegetables. *Reserve onions for use in day 3.

    Serve hot off the skillet with homemade apple sauce and sour cream with roasted vegetables on the side.

    Day 3 - Grilled Brisket & Onion Challah Sandwiches w/ Horseradish Mayo

    Heat skillet over medium-high heat and coat with butter.

    In a small bowl whisk together ¼ cup mayonnaise, 1 tbsp sour cream and 1 ½ tbsp prepared horseradish. Season w/ salt and pepper.

    Set out 4 thick cut slices of challah. Layer two slices with leftover brisket, leftover balsamic onions, sliced tomato, and swiss cheese. Spread remaining two slices with horseradish mayo and place on top of brisket slices, mayo side down.

    Grill challah sandwiches until crisp and golden brown on both sides, adding more butter to pan when you flip the sandwich.

    Cut in half and serve w/ warmed leftover brisket pan sauce for dipping.

    Day 4 - Lox & Latkes Benedict

    Prepare hollaindaise sauce (diving recipe in half).

    Meanwhile, make poached eggs by filling a large, wide pot halfway with water. Bring to a boil. Add ¼ cup white wine vinegar and reduce the heat until there are no more bubbles in the water.

    Crack 4 eggs very close to the water and gently drop each egg into the pot. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes and remove with a slotted spoon. If making ahead of time, place in a bowl of cold water and reheat in the poaching liquid when ready to serve.

    Reheat 4 leftover latkes. Top each with lox, a poached egg, and hollandaise.

    Day 5 - Challah French Toast

    Thickly slice 4 pieces of challah.

    In a large shallow bowl, whisk together 3 eggs, ½ cup milk, ¼ tsp vanilla extract, ½ tsp honey, and a pinch of salt. Soak slices in the egg mixture for 5 minutes, turning once.

    Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and coat with butter. Add the soaked bread and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until crisp and nicely browned

    Serve hot with warmed maple syrup, applesauce, and/or powdered sugar. Enjoy!

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    Brooke Viggiano is a contributing writer who is always looking to share Houston's coolest and tastiest happenings with the Houston Press readers.
    Contact: Brooke Viggiano