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Make a slow-roasted beef brisket

Growing up in a family of six, with three older brothers, some form of meat was on the menu pretty much every night of the week.
One of my favorite dishes was my mother’s slow-roasted beef brisket. I loved coming home from school and breathing in the aroma of the roast. The entire house smelled of that beefy goodness.
When our four children were young, I probably cooked a roast every few weeks, partly because it was so easy, but mainly because everybody liked it and nobody had any complaints. If there were any leftovers, and there rarely were, they were perfect for a beefy pot pie or vegetable beef soup the next day.
I still cook a brisket every now and then. And now there are always leftovers, which makes me happy. Brisket also freezes beautifully. Nothing pairs with this roast better than mashed potatoes, but rice or buttered noodles also work. Steam some green beans and serve with some rolls. This dinner is sure to warm the family up on a cold night.

beef brisket
1 3 to 4 pound beef brisket
Kosher salt and pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions, chopped
2 carrots, coarsely chopped
2 stalks celery, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup tomato paste
2 bay leaves
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup beef stock
1 can fire roasted tomatoes
2 sprigs thyme
1 sprig rosemary
1 1/2 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 tablespoon flour

Season the brisket liberally with salt and pepper. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a heavy-bottomed skillet. Sear the brisket until it has a brown crust and then turn over and sear the other side. Remove the brisket and add the onions, carrots and celery, stirring to incorporate any browned bits from the roast. Stir in tomato paste and cook a few more minutes. Add the wine and heat to a boiling. Remove from heat. Place the brisket in the slow cooker. Pour vegetables over the brisket. Add  beef stock, bay leaves, thyme and rosemary. Cover and cook on low for eight to nine hours. When brisket is done, move it to a platter. Loosely tent brisket with foil and then cut against the grain. To make a quick sauce, melt a few tablespoons butter in a small saucepan. Whisk in flour and stir for a few minutes. Strain the juices into the saucepan, whisking constantly. Bring to a boil and simmer for a minute.
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Mashed potatoes
3-4 pounds Russet potatoes
3/4 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup chives, minced

Peel potatoes and cut into large chunks. Place in large pot and cover with cold water. Bring the potatoes to a boil, adding plenty of salt. Boil gently until potatoes are tender, 20 to 30 minutes. In a small saucepan, bring heavy cream and butter to a simmer. Drain potatoes and then return to the pot. Using a large whisk, mash the potatoes and then slowly add the hot cream and butter, a little at a time until achieving the desired consistency. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt to taste. Sprinkle with chives and serve immediately.
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These yummy macaroons are a snap to make. Keep shredded coconut in the freezer and the ingredients to pull these together at a moment’s notice will always be there.

Coconut macaroons
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups sweetened shredded coconut

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place parchment paper on a baking sheet and brush with melted butter. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla extract. Blend in coconut. Drop teaspoonfuls onto the baking sheet and then bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. Carefully transfer to a rack to cool.