Each year for our Christmas dinner I make a standing rib roast. It’s been a family tradition for nine years running. Everyone looks forward to my standing rib roast because it’s easily the most indulgent meal of the year. My entire family counts on this meal, literally not eating a thing just to make sure they are sufficiently hungry to pack away enough of the prime rib to satisfy them for 364 days.

This year I went to the market to get our standing rib roast but apparently was struck with some sort of temporary amnesia. I have no idea what happened. Maybe I was struck in the head in the produce department? Maybe I slipped and fell in the frozen food aisle? I can’t explain what happened, all I know is I found myself in the check out lane with a beef brisket in my cart. What??

I’m not kidding when I say I have never, ever cooked a beef brisket in my life. I really can’t explain why I decided it would be a good idea to try cooking one, much less cooking one for Christmas dinner. But once I got home and reality hit me I began furiously searching for ways to cook this thing. I won’t lie, I was intimidated, which is not something that happens very often. I kept running into comments about how tough brisket can be, and how difficult it can be to get great flavor from a brisket. Wow, not good news for someone who’s never cooked one of these things before.

After all the research and reading I finally came to a decision. I stuck with my instincts and did what I always do, I threw out the opinions and went with my gut. I decided that the key here was a long and flavorful marinade followed by a low and slow roast in the oven. Then I crossed my fingers and hoped for the best Truth be told, I do that a lot. Go big or go home is what I say, and what’s bigger than Christmas dinner? I’ll admit it added a little excitement to my day.

Once I pulled the brisket from the oven I immediately knew my gamble was going to pay off. One whiff of that brisket told me everything I needed to know. It was not just cooked perfectly, it was ready to explode with flavor. My worries disappeared when the brisket practically fell apart as I sliced it. As usual my husband was waiting as this emerged from the oven, and as usual he got the first the bite. His face said it all – pure bliss. The entire family reacted the same way, and everyone agreed with him when he declared that it was time to start a new tradition. But I doubt we will have to wait until next Christmas to enjoy this meal because I’ve been asked pretty much every day if I can make it again. With a recipe this easy I can guarantee it will be making a repeat appearance here.


Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 2 hours 30 mins

Total time: 2 hours 40 mins

Serves: 4-6


  • 4 lb beef brisket
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 1/2 cup soy or tamari sauce
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • salt and pepper to taste


Place beef brisket in a large rectangular dish or bowl.
Make several small cuts into the brisket using a paring knife to allow marinade to penetrate the meat.
Whisk together remaining ingredients.’
Pour over the brisket.
Cover and refrigerate for 12-24 hours.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Place brisket into a large rectangular baking pan.
Pour remaining marinade over the top of the brisket.
Roast for 2 hours and 30 minutes to 2 hours and 45 minutes.
Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes.
Slice and serve.

Categories: Beef & Pork

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