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What cut of beef is brisket? - Alternate name??

In Canada we don't seem to have a cut of meat called brisket. Does anyone know another name for this cut of meat?

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  1. I wasn't able to find out another name but it's from the lower chest of the cattle: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Be.... Maybe you can describe it (and maybe reference corned beef) to your butcher and he can tell you another name for it?

    1. it's one of the primal beef cuts. Brisket... it's from the lower front breast of the cow.

      I don't know of other names. I remember a gentleman in the UK on a quest to get brisket... his came with bones and it was HUGE. But frankly, in canada, I'm very surprised you haven't found brisket. What part of canada are you in? maybe it isn't as common in the East? I didn't know they butchered beef that differently there than they do in the U.S. Could it possibly be that they market you went to was just not that knowledgeable about beef?

      In the US, it's one of the 8 main (primal) cuts of beef. Lots of places don't carry it, but they all know what it is. Getting them to know the difference between the point and the flat of the brisket is a different story, but they at least know the meat.

      Sorry I can't help more. But I'd ask around to some different places. Good luck.

      1. Tracey, I don't know what part of our fine country you live in, but I can name about 5 places within walking distance of my house in toronto where i can buy brisket. that said, you don't see as much of it for sale in say loblaws or dominion, because up here, it's usually turned into corned beef or pastrami. in the u.s., it's quite often done on the bbq.

        1 Reply
        1. re: tuqueboy

          Even in the USA brisket is rarely on display in ordinary groceries. It is easier to find in cryopacks at a wholesale club (e.g. Sams). In the past only smaller portions were available as corned beef in March. It has become easier to find the whole brisket in recent years, probably due to a growing awareness of Texas style BBQ.


        2. I own/produce Angus cattle in montana, and there is no other name that we call "brisket" than brisket. The way it works is the closer to the chest the meat comes from - the tougher. The chuck and the brisket come from the shoulder part of the beef - the chuck being the "top" cut and the brisket the "bottom" cut. The closer to the frontal or chest area of the cattle the slower you must cook it. The farther back on the animal the more tender the meat - this is the area where you find the better roasting meat and the steaks. The way we cook brisket on the ranch is to slow cook it on a smoker (you can use an oven set at about 300 degrees and cook for 7 to 12 hours). Smoking with your favorite wood or bottled beverage such as bourban adds to the flavor. We cook it about 12 to 18 hours in the smoker and then after cooking add barbeque sauce. Cut the meat crosswise to the grain. It is yummy. Brisket itself is the cut of meat and there is no other name. When the meet is corned or made into pastrami it is marinated in a liquid for many days. We do it by hand in a crock. You can buy it "corned" in your local supermarket. I would say if a butcher does not know what brisket is - he is not much of a butcher or maybe an apprentice. I live in the USA, and have never heard of not being able to get brisket, but even though I am close to Canada, I have never looked there. I would suggest to all getting a USDA cattle cut chart and always remember when you are cooking anything from front chest to back legs to decrease your temperature and cook for less time. When cooking chuck or brisket always cook for at least four hours in a slow oven for chuck and much more for brisket. That way you will always have fall of the bone tender meat.

          1 Reply
          1. re: amal3113

            A thoughtful, complete and very intelligent answer, amal3113. Perhaps, in French-speaking parts of Canada, the brisket may be called "poitrine". According to my Cassell's French-English dictionary the definition is: chest, breast, brisket. Poitrine de veau is veal breast.

          2. I buy brisket two or three times a year and I don't know of any other name. It is not always easy to get in supermarkets. However, I would recommend Nortown Meats on Eglinton near Bathurst or York Mills and Bayview or at the Promenade Shopping Centre. They know how to cut a proper brisket. I prefer a single brisket, but speak to the butcher about your needs before deciding. Any kosher butcher will have brisket. I am from Toronto.

            1 Reply
            1. re: faijay

              I agree with faijay about the Nortown rec. tracym, I believe you live in Toronto, given your other posts, so you should have no problem. Tuqueboy is right, brisket is everywhere, just not so much in the big grocery stores (Bruno's and Pusateri's both carry it). But every butcher will carry it and the Jewish butchers are generally the best at cutting it (hence the Nortown rec).

            2. Oh, if you need any recipes or cooking methods, come back and post.

              1. What then is "deckel"?

                1. Deckle usually refers to the 'point' of the brisket, the fattier hump-like portion that sits atop the flat section and has meat running through the fat in layers. The grain runs in a different direction than the flat, and the two sections are seperated by a ribbon of fat. You'll often see the flat cut sold by itself, but rarely the 'point' or deckle.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: BackyardChef

                    Thank you very much. I've been having an argument about this with a friend for long enough that I forgot what we were arguing about! Her mom says she makes deckle and brisket, and that's always confused me. We had a taste test last year, and I think I prefer the flat.

                    Definitely prefer my mother's in any case!

                    1. re: BackyardChef

                      "You'll often see the flat cut sold by itself, but rarely the 'point' or deckle."

                      Which is just too bad, since the point/deckle is about the most succulent, rich piece of meat I've ever tasted. Amazing in chili.

                      1. re: BackyardChef

                        At last, a mystery solved. My mother would call in the meat order to the butcher who would deliver. I remember her ordering a brust deckle and never could figure out what it was. She would also order a double brisket. I think she ungedempt (braised) the deckle on top of the stove and did the brisket in the oven, as I do. She would also get a halben soup chicken.

                      2. Hi Tracey, Like tuqueboy said, you won't usually find it at a big supermarket.

                        I noticed you post on the Ontario board. Not sure if you live in Toronto, but I buy my briskets at European Meats, on Baldwin St., in Kensington Market--they always have them.

                        1. good lord, i pity anyone who does not live near a grocery with plenty of brisket in the butcher's case. all this talk about brisket is making me hungry. i think i know what i am cooking tomorrow.

                          on a side note, i have used Emeril's Beer Braised Brisket recipe several times and always to great effect.

                          1. Thanks everyone for your replies. You all are incredibly knowledgable and generous!

                            I am in Toronto and work very close to Baldwin so I will indeed check out European or Nortown if I get up to Yonge and Eligible. I guess, I assumed we called it something different up north after checking with those "cuts of beef posters" and shopping almost exclusively at groceries with huge kosher sections and never seeing it. I've checked at every butchershop, I've been too as well, guess I've just been missing it.

                            I think I have a good recipe. But I'm open to any tried and true suggestions you might have. I'm thinking more "Friday-night" dinner style rather than southern style for now (since I don't have a BBQ!).

                            Thanks again folks! I'm new to this board and had no idea I would find such a high saturation of foodie IQ!

                            1. If you're doing a slow braise with veggies, my tip would be to brown the (generously salted and peppered) meat *really dark* ("Isn't it dark enough yet?" "No, darker") before deglazing the pan with some red wine, then putting in the meat and veg and adding stock. Mario Batali often points out that the difference between OK food and great food can be something as simple, but easily neglected, as getting the meat dark enough before braising. High heat. Yes, that high. No, darker. Good luck.

                              1. I was surprised to find that I prefer the point cut. I bought a whole brisket and cut it in half. I home-corned the flat cut (CI has a great recipe) and braised the point cut. It looked like it was all fat but when I cut into it it was all meat inside. It was incredibly delicious.

                                1. Interesting conversation on Brisket. I'm a caterer in Montreal. Brisket is mainly consumed as a traditional jewish braised dish or for the creation of smoked or corned beef in this part of the world, it is easily found at jewish and kosher butchers (kosher brisket is triple the price of non kosher). I buy mine at the Le Bifteque restaurant butcher shop on Cote de Liesse road, it's about $3.99/pound. For a traditional tasty braise sear the brisket in a large pan or flat top. Make a braising liquid of about 2 cups beef broth, 2 cups red wine and 2 cups cooking port. Add 1 can diced tomatoes, a head of garlic, one bunch of thyme, 3 carrots, 4 celery ribs and 3 onions rough chopped. Preheat the braise in a stock pot and bring it to a boil while you preheat your oven. Cover your meat with the braising concoction in a serious roasting pan and cover tightly with foil. Set your oven at Bake 250F for 4 hours. Remove and let cool. Strain liquid and refridgerate over night then skim fat and reduce 1/3, adjust the seasoning. Let meat cool and refridgerate over night. Trim fat then slice chilled meat against the grain the next day, place in pyrex and cover with finished sauce. Reheat covered for about 40 minutes.
                                  This is a labor intensive process and well worth it. This dish gets better after being in the fridge for a few days.

                                  1. Can anyone tell me what brisket might be called in German? Since having kosher brisket (with carrots and onions and pearl barley in gravy) on Long Island a few years ago, I would love to recreate the recipe, and have tried to describe the cut of meat to butchers here. Maybe it's the equivalent of our 'Tafelspitz', but would still have to be rolled. Is brisket always rolled? The cows can't be any different, so there must be an answer!

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: shepherd100

                                      Brisket in German is spitzen burst. The point of the breast.

                                    2. Hi ecater,
                                      what is cooking port?

                                      1. I'm originally from Toronto and we were always able to find brisket, however since I've been in Alberta (beef province of Canada) I have been unable to find it. However, I have never gone to a butcher to look for it and they may possible have this cut of meat. Also, it's quite possible that Co-Op might carry this meat, you could ask at the butcher counter.

                                        1. Hi Tracey - I live in BC and have never seen a brisket roast in any store but I have never actually asked a butcher. We also don't have skirt steak. It's strange that we can live so close to the US and yet have different names or cuts of beef. I sort of thought that they were standardized but I guess not.

                                          1. Went to Superstore today. The butcher said they label it 'Flank Steak'

                                            3 Replies
                                            1. re: jonytam

                                              Wow. Gotta love Superstore.

                                              I guess when all the meat comes in precut and cryovac'ed, they don't HAVE to know the difference between two very distinctive pieces of meat from opposite halves of the cow, right?

                                              1. re: jonytam

                                                Huh? That's ridiculous. Some meat cutter needs to go get some training. Sheesh.

                                                1. re: jonytam

                                                  The butcher may falsely label it that - but these 'off cuts' are all different - Skirt, Flank, Bavette, Flatiron, Hanger/Onglet - these are sold as different cuts at Sanigans in Kensington Market.

                                                  And they don't all cook the same!

                                                2. Here's a Canadian Beef council site - Brisket is brisket. In French is a different name.

                                                  1. I do not know of another name - the brisket comes from the breast section beneath the first five ribs, behind the foreshank.

                                                    A portion of the brisket is calle dthe deckel -

                                                    1. In Canada we do have brisket, just ask your butcher.

                                                      1. I live in Australia and am wondering the same thing. I have looked around and haven't found any meat labelled brisket. We do have a lot of corned beef though. I wonder what to ask for here so I can make the recipe I have?

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: Amelia22

                                                          It's called brisket in Australia too. E.g. scroll down to the beef section on the linked web page (which also has an interesting section on crocodile cuts -- only in Australia!) http://wholesalemeats.com.au/author/a...

                                                        2. Thanks for all the input, however I posted this comment 8 years ago and I've managed to sort it out now. I'm back in Ontario and have been able to locate the brisket here. Thanks again.

                                                          1. Thanks for all the input, however I posted this comment 8 years ago and I've managed to sort it out now. I'm back in Ontario and have been able to locate the brisket here. Thanks again.

                                                            1. Looking over the replies, I'd say the issue isn't the name, but the availability. If the general public isn't used to cooking this cut, the groceries won't carry it, at least not prepackaged and out on display.

                                                              In the USA portions of the brisket as sold as ready-to-cook corned beef, especially around St Patrick's Day.

                                                              A whole, unmarinated brisket is not commonly seen on display. It's too large for most home cooks. Plus they don't know what to do with it. But if BBQ (the slow cook smoking type) has a following in your area, a butcher or grocery, may have it on display.

                                                              In short, it's a specialized cut that retail customers rarely ask for.

                                                              1. great book with good recipes

                                                                The Brisket Book: A Love Story with Recipes Hardcover – October 4, 2011
                                                                by Stephanie Pierson (Author)

                                                                1. drongo/paulj/jpr_54,

                                                                  I'm not being critical of any of your response(s), you've all offered good information to those inquiring. I'm just curious none of you questioned these posts? Obviously it's an 8 year old thread, revived by a 1st time poster, followed up by another 1st time poster and then "thanks" by another first time poster responding as if they were the OP!?!?!?! Is it just me or does the thread have a Twilight Zone quality to it?

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                    Return of the Living Dead! (Though in that one the zombies wanted brains, brains... in this one, it's briskets, briskets.... aaarghh.)