Sesame Ssam Jang Brisket Lettuce Wraps by Mei Mei Boston
It’s that time again! I am SO excited for October’s Restaurant Recipe- comin’ in hot courtesy of the lovely crew at Mei Mei. (I’m gonna try to dish up these Restaurant Recipes once a month for you guys, so keep an eye out!)
This month, I’ve teamed up with Mei, Irene and Andy, the siblings behind Boston’s beloved food truck (and storefront), Mei Mei. Possibly the most exciting part of all this is that next year Mei Mei is releasing a COOKBOOK, you guys! (Go pre-order it!) Soon, you will be able to enjoy their Double Awesome scallion pancake sandwich in the comfort of your own home. Although, if I may be so bold to say that the Double Awesome is the PERFECT hangover cure. When they make it. Not me. In this scenario I would have had too much wine the night before..
To celebrate (it’s never too early!) the release of their book Double Awesome Chinese Food they have graciously given me a sneak-peek and permission to share this amazing recipe with you all. I know it’s Friday, but you still have time to go get a brisket and prep ingredients for a slow-roast weekend project that will yield some deliciously tasty lettuce wraps. Go go go!!!
Sesame Ssam Jang Brisket Lettuce Wraps
Recipe courtesy of Mei Mei in Boston, MA
Serves: 4 to 6
1⁄3 cup (90 g) doenjang or miso
1⁄3 cup (70 g) toasted sesame oil
1⁄4 cup (80 g) gochujang
2 tablespoons (40 g) honey
1 tablespoon (15 g) Chinese sesame paste or tahini
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons (26 g) neutral oil, such as canola
One 3-pound (1.3 kg) beef brisket
3 medium onions, thinly sliced
1 cup (200 g) beer
Lettuce, for wrapping (Bibb or Butter lettuce)
White rice, for soaking up all the jammy onion brisket goodness at the bottom of the pan
Cabbage Pickles (Recipe from Mei Mei’s upcoming cookbook! In the meantime whip up your own brine and mix with red cabbage for a pop of texture and color)
Soy Aioli, or another sauce of your choice (Another gem from the book, but you’ll have to wait and see!)
1) Preheat the oven to 325°F (160°C).
2) Mix the doenjang, sesame oil, gochujang, honey, sesame paste, and garlic in a small bowl.
3) Heat the neutral oil in a Dutch oven or a large heavy-bottomed pot for which you have a lid over medium-high heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add the brisket and sear on both sides until well browned, about 5 minutes per side.
4) Using sturdy tongs or a large fork, carefully transfer the brisket to a large plate or platter.
5) Add the onions and beer to the pot, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Cook the onions for about 10 minutes, until they are browned and softened.
6) Turn off the heat, then place the brisket on top of the onions along with any juices from the plate.
7) Take the wooden spoon and smear the paste all over the top of the brisket. Cover the pot, place it in the oven, and cook, basting every so often, for 3 to 4 hours. Add more beer as needed (or even better, drink the rest of it).
8) Pull the pot out of the oven, slice the beef against the grain, and return to the pot to soak up any juices. Let cool slightly and lay on a platter alongside lettuce, pickles, and sauce for people to assemble their own lettuce wraps.