How to Make Brisket Tacos

Learn how to make brisket tacos from Brooklyn Taco Co. chef/owner Jesse Kramer in this Howcast video.

I am going to show you how to make one of my favorite tacos today, and that’s the beef brisket. So brisket is actually this area of the cow, and it’s very fatty. And the reason why it’s so delicious is because it has really good fat marbling. Now I like to leave a little bit of the fat on the meat when I’m cooking it, because it gently cooks the meat, and it brings out such a deeper flavor. So what I’m going to do is actually create fist-sized pieces so it fits nicely in a pan.

And we’re going to get some nice color on it. You want to brown the brisket before you cook it, because you caramelize the outside of the fats, bring out the sugars, and it add a really nice depth to the flavor. So what we’re going to do is just season the beef here, and be confident with your salt. The meat really needs it to bring out the flavor. So I’m going to properly salt this here. And so I’m going to have a pan going right here, really nice and hot. I want to put some oil in there so we get a nice brown color on it. And again, don’t be afraid. Brisket is a fatty meat, and we are proud of it. All right. So I’m going to give that about 10, 15 seconds to heat up, and then you want it to make a nice sizzle.

That’s the sound we want, right there. That is going to be the beef caramelizing. And you’re looking at about two minutes, maybe a little less total, depending on how hot your pan is. So while that’s cooking, I’m going to get my stock ready. Now I just use an over the counter stock. You’re more than welcome to make your own. Now I like a really nice, deep-flavored stock, so that the beef will be flavored to the core when you’re done cooking it. So what I do at the end, I just take a little taste. Need a little more, because I want it to be really, really, really flavorful at the end. And it’s really up to you how much stock you want to add. All right. Check on my beef braising here. Close. You can see that it’s starting to brown around the edges. All right. And then as soon as that’s done, I’m going to put it right into the stock. And then I also have some bay leaves, which bring a lot of flavor and depth to the stock.

So I put that in. I’m going to check on the brown. That’s perfect color right there. You want a golden brown. Perfect. And then these are pretty much ready to go into the stock. I’m going to do that. Turn that off. And then you’re looking at about two and half, minimum two and a half hours with the brisket, because it’s a muscle. It really needs a lot of time to cook slow and low. And if you really want to get professional, you can actually save the oil, put a little water and de-glaze the pan, and pour that in your stock. And you have an incredible brisket taco waiting for you. So I know you guys are really excited right now. The brisket, we’ve been patiently waiting for it to finish.

The meat has broken down. It falls apart in your hand. I have it sitting in a little bit of the juice, because that’s just got so much of the flavor from when we cooked it. I’m going to cook fresh tortillas now. Remember, two layers. If you use one, it will break apart, and no one likes a messy taco in their hand. So we’re giving this about 20, 30 seconds a side. We want to get some color, because that’s the character here. While this is cooking, I have pineapple, red onion salsa with cilantro, a little bit of lime, Mexican cotija cheese, which is similar to a Mexican style of Parmesan. It’s a pasteurized cow milk, grated. Then a little table sauce adds a little top layer of flavor.

So here we are. See some brown color. And it’s really bringing out the nutty flavor when you give it some time over high heat. Bring this to the table here. And fat is OK. Don’t get rid of it. That is your friend. So here we are. So good. Don’t overfill it, either. You want it to be easy to eat. You can always make yourself a second one, which I will do right after this. All right. So here we go. Some fresh pineapple salsa. Beautiful. Look at the color. So much going on. All right. Sprinkle the cheese. It adds a little bit of a salt and a creamy flavor. Beautiful. And then finish it with the table sauce. This is a little hot sauce. This one’s mild. It’s guajillo chile based. All right. Lime. And you know I’m going to make a mess now, which is totally fine. Here we go. Hell yeah. Sweet, salty, beefy, everything.

That’s how you make a brisket taco.