(idea submitted and written by Amanda D.)
When a group of Jewish Young Adults gets together for some drinks and/or gossip, several topics of conversation are repeated from the typical JYA repertoire (see “talking about sex”). But there is one topic that is particularly vexing for non JYA companions, such as when the word shiksa is used without explanation. That topic is: Arguing about who’s mother has the best Brisket.
“Brisket?” The non JYA asks, still wondering how and why the conversation turned from sex positions, ”isn’t that just barbecued beef?”
The JYA’s just stare at this confused companion, unable to believe that he actually doesn’t know what “brisket” is. And each in turn attempts to explain this tasty phenomenon while still maintaining that their mom makes it better.
Brisket, the beef dish served at Jewish functions since the dawn of time, is a unique dish that maintains its position as the true star of dinners from Passover to Shabbat. Made from the fattier, denser part of the cow, the beef is covered in any combination of tomato sauce, jelly, ketchup, etc. and baked in the oven until it magically softens into a fall off your fork masterpiece that rivals any BBQ joint in the country.
Each brisket chef has their own special way of preparing brisket and often fiercely protects their recipes from outsiders. It is for this reason that, when asked what really makes mom’s brisket the very best, JYA’s are unable to come up with a solid response. As they fumble for an answer, words like – “ tomatoey” and “kind of sweet” are often repeated. But in truth, the JYA simply has no real idea what goes into their mom’s brisket. They only knows that its been eaten at every Jewish function held at home since they were born and that it tastes sooooo much better than when its eaten at the ———- house every year for Rosh Hashana. (name removed for my own protection).
As moms across the country fill Tupperware with their leftover holiday brisket for their JYA’s to take to their current homes, they probably do not realize that their children are in fact defending the deliciousness and integrity of their brisket on a regular basis. So next time you are handed this Tupperware of beefy heaven, kiss your mom on the cheek and let her know that her brisket truly is the best in the world.
Thanks for the inspiration, mom! Your brisket really is the best!