Fresh brisket will be fine in your fridge for up to five days. Just be sure to keep the meat in its original packaging prior to cooking or freezing.
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Next: How to Freeze Brisket
To extend brisket's shelf life for up to 12 months, simply overwrap the meat (original packaging still intact) with aluminum foil and place in the freezer. It is also advised to place the brisket in a heavy-duty freezer bag to avoid freezer burn.
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Next: How to Thaw Brisket
Leave the meat in the fridge and allow one day of thawing time for every four pounds. Placing a frozen brisket in a slow cooker is fine, but be sure to add a liquid like beef or vegetable broth to speed up the defrosting process.
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Next: Why Do We Celebrate Christmas on Dec. 25?
Why Do We Celebrate Christmas on Dec. 25?
There are several reasons Christmas is celebrated on Dec. 25. The date is nine months after March 25, a day recognized by Christians as Annunciation. It was the day Mary was told she would was having a baby. The nine months that follow are an approximation of Jesus’ birth. Dec. 25 also coincides with pagan Winter Solstice celebrations like Saturnalia' and Dies Natalis Solis Invicti. Since they were historically celebrated around that time of year there was precedent for holiday festivities during this time of year.
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Next: What Does the Name 'Christmas' Mean and What Is the Meaning of Christmas?
What Does the Name 'Christmas' Mean and What Is the Meaning of Christmas?
Christmas is a shortened from the words “Christ’s mass.” It’s derived from the Middle English word "Cristemasse" which has Greek, Hebrew and Latin origins. Christmas is an annual holiday that honors the birth of Jesus Christ. It is celebrated by Christians around the world and is regarded as an important religious and cultural holiday.
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Next: How Can We Celebrate Christmas?
How Can We Celebrate Christmas?
Christmas is traditionally celebrated in many ways and celebrations vary across cultures. In the days leading up to Christmas, people usually put up special decorations including colorful lights and evergreen trees. Gifts are often placed under the tree and exchanged on Christmas day among loved ones. Large meals are also typically served as part of the celebration as well.
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As with most meat, the safest way to thaw beef is in the refrigerator. Small cuts of beef can take up to 24 hours, while larger slabs can take a few days. If you’re in a pinch, frozen beef can be thawed in a bowl or container of lukewarm water. Place the bowl or container in the sink and leave under a running faucet. Never allow raw beef to thaw or sit on a counter or cutting board. Since it takes longer to thaw than most meats, it is more susceptible to bacteria growth.
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In order to effectively freeze beef, you’ll want to limit its exposure to air. This not only prevents the production of freezer burn, but also extends its shelf life to three months or longer. The best way to package beef is to wrap it tightly in freezer paper or plastic wrap. You should then wrap the meat in a layer of aluminum foil or place it in a plastic bag.
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For ground beef, keep refrigerated and use within one to two days. It can stay in its original container if the packaging hasn’t been opened. Steaks follow the same protocol, but can last a bit longer at three to five days. It’s actually best to allow a little airflow with stored meat, as tightly-adhered plastic like Saran wrap can make meat sweat and, as a result, less tender. Meat can be transferred to plastic containers, but should be covered loosely.
Never refrigerate raw meat if it’s been sitting out beyond two hours.
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Next: How to Store Brisket
A classic Jewish staple, brisket is slow-cooked for optimum tenderness and flavor. Here the meat is first coated with a Hungarian paprika rub, then slow-cooked with tomatoes, onion, and rosemary. The addition of brown sugar and vinegar lends a sweet-savory balance to the deep, meaty flavor. Be sure to spoon the sauce over potatoes.
What to buy: If you’re making this dish for Passover, make sure all of your ingredients are kosher for Passover. If you can’t find kosher-for-Passover cider vinegar, then kosher-for-Passover red wine vinegar is a good substitute.
Game plan: Cook the brisket the day before serving; the flavors meld after a night in the refrigerator.
This dish was featured as part of our Recipes for Passover photo gallery.