Store-bought smoked beef brisket was used here. It turns out we have a neighbor who’s in the smoked meat business and we buy directly from them. We could have enjoyed the meat with bread or rice, as we usually do, but it was one of those days when I wanted to try something new.
I checked the fridge for vegetables, there was a lone eggplant, a couple of bell peppers and a container of beautiful cherry tomatoes. And suddenly, I had this image of a pasta dish with the smell and colors of a summer day.
Fatty and fully cooked, all I had to do was cut the slab of meat into cubes and heat them in butter. No need to add seasoning at this point because the beef was fully seasoned. Why risk ruining perfection, right?
The cubes of beef brisket were scooped out leaving behind the butter that had soaked up some of the smoky goodness. Just perfect to saute chopped onion and butter in. Because eggplant takes longest to cook among the three vegetables, it went into the pan ahead of the other two.
When the eggplant cubes were almost done, the diced bell pepper was thrown in. By the time the eggplant cubes were fully cooked, so were the pieces of bell pepper.
Tomatoes don’t really need cooking but since this is a hot dish, the halved cherry tomatoes were tossed with the eggplant and bell pepper just until heated through.
Fully cooked pasta was tossed with the vegetables until every strand was glistening with butter. Then, the beef went back into the pan and tossed with the noodles and vegetables. A squirt of lemon juice and… It smelled so good it was tempting to get a fork and eat the pasta dish right off the pan. But it was begging for some finishing touches.
So, into bowls went the pasta, meat and vegetables. Pecorino was grated directly over them. For a final touch, fresh basil leaves were torn and sprinkled over the bowls of pasta. Perfect.
Full recipe below
Beef brisket BBQ pasta
- 2 tablespoons olive oil - not extra virgin
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups cubed beef brisket bbq
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
- 1 cup diced eggplant
- ½ cup diced bell pepper
- 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
- cooked pasta for three - (cook the noodles in generously salted water for best results)
- ¼ lemon
- basil leaves - to garnish
- grated Pecorino - to garnish
- Heat the olive oil and butter in a large pan.
- Add the cubed beef brisket and toss just until heated through.
- Scoop out the beef and set aside.
- In the mixed oil in the pan, saute the onion and garlic until aromatic.
- Add the diced eggplant, sprinkle with a bit if salt and pepper and cook, tossing often, until the eggplant pieces are almost done.
- Throw in the diced bell pepper and cook, tossing, for about a minute.
- Add the cherry tomatoes. Sprinkle in a bit more salt and pepper. Cook, tossing, just until the tomatoes are heated through.
- Add the cooked pasta to the vegetables. Toss well.
- Add the beef to the noodles and vegetables. Toss until heated through.
- Squeeze the lemon directly over the beef brisket BBQ pasta and toss a few more times.
- Taste. Add more salt and pepper, if needed.
- Divide the beef brisket BBQ pasta among three bowls.
- Garnish with torn fresh basil leaves and grated Pecorino.