Bill Hogan/Chicago Tribune
Espresso-powered barbecue brisket
Prep: 45 minutes
Chill: 8 hours
Cook: 4-6 hours
Note: Adapted from "Fire It Up!" by Andrew Schloss and David Joachim.
Juice of 2 lemons
2 cups strong brewed coffee, preferably espresso roast
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons coarse salt
3/4 cup espresso rub, see recipe
1 flat or center-cut beef brisket (3-4 pounds), trimmed, with 1/4-inch fat on one side
1 cup espresso grilling sauce, see recipe below
1. Mix lemon juice, coffee, molasses, balsamic vinegar, salt and 1 tablespoon espresso rub in a small bowl. Set this espresso mop aside. Rub the remaining espresso rub all over the brisket. Cover tightly with plastic wrap; refrigerate at least 8 hours.
2. Rest the meat at room temperature before grilling, about 1 hour. Prepare grill for indirect medium-low heat, about 250 degrees. Coat grate with oil.
3. Put the brisket, fatty-side up, on the grill away from the heat; cover the grill. Cook until severely browned and blackened in spots or very well-done (about 170 degrees on an instant read thermometer), 4 to 6 hours total. Mop or drizzle the brisket with the espresso mop on both sides whenever the surface looks dry, every 45 minutes during the entire cooking time.
4. After 2 hours of cooking, put the brisket in an aluminum foil pan, fatty side up; return brisket to the grill away from the heat. Cover the grill; continue cooking. You only need to mop the top, fatty side of the brisket once the meat is in the pan. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should stay about 250 degrees during the entire cooking time. If using charcoal, add fresh coals about once an hour.
5. Remove the pan from the heat; let rest 20 minutes. Trim any excess fat; slice brisket across the grain. Serve with the grilling sauce.
Per serving: 368 calories, 25% of calories from fat, 10 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 97 mg cholesterol, 20 g carbohydrates, 47 g protein, 1,467 mg sodium, 1 g fiber.
In a bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons each finely ground dark-roast coffee, smoked paprika, dark brown sugar, coarse salt and ground black pepper; 1 tablespoon each ground ancho chili and finely grated lemon zest. Store in a tightly closed container in the refrigerator up to 1 week. Makes 3/4 cup.
Espresso grilling sauce:
In a saucepan, mix together 1 cup each brewed dark-roast coffee and ketchup; 1/4 cup dark brown mustard; 1/3 cup honey; 2 tablespoons citrus juice (lemon, orange or lime); 2 tablespoons hot pepper sauce; 2 teaspoons each ground black pepper and coarse salt. Heat to a boil. Lower heat; simmer until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Refrigerate in a tightly closed container up to 1 month. Makes 2 1/3 cups.