One of the more interesting things about brisket is the “Costco effect” – the bigger your go, the better the price. You see partial points in the grocery store, things that look about the size of a badass steak, but you pay literally twice as much per kilogram for that as you do when you but the whole shebang. This is what we call good value.
The downside, of course, is the ol’ “what the hell do I do with all this meat” problem. Generally you want to cook brisket whole to take advantage of the natural flavoring that comes out of the connective tissue, but unless you happen to have 38 of your closest friends and neighbours over for dinner, it can be a little overwhelming. So how about something to do with half of a brisket? You can slice a full slab in half, cook half now and either freeze the second half for a future project or grind it up for the World’s Best Burger Blend.
So here we go. A simplified take on a very traditional Mexican beef preparation called machaca. Big rich beefy goodness tempered with cinnamon and coffee and ancho chilies. This version takes minimal effort, packs huge flavour, and makes the best damn tacos on the planet. If you can find the time, make this either the morning of your meal or the day before so you can let the meat cool in the liquid before you shred and serve it. Now keep reading and get ready to make some magic.