Brisket Shawarma

Micah Wexler of Mezze shares his recipe

Chef Micah Wexler earned his Chef of the Year award for what he calls the “bubbe cuisine” at his La Cienega restaurant, Mezze. That includes house-cured pastrami, fluffy matzo balls, and this: slow-cooked brisket shawarma. The pita wrap recalls the best of late night street food, while the brisket—whether you have a Jewish grandma or not—tastes of home.


1 whole brisket
1 cup yogurt
3 cinnamon sticks, whole
2 tablespoons black pepper, whole
2 tablespoons cumin seed, whole
10 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons thyme leaves


In a spice grinder, grind the spices into a powder.

Chop garlic and mix together with yogurt, spice, thyme.

Season the brisket with salt and rub the yogurt marinade all over and let sit in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours.

Place the brisket in a roasting pan and roast in a 250° oven for at least 6 hours or until fully tender.

Allow brisket to cool and shred the meat by hand, discarding the excess fat.

Heat a heavy pan until hot and place 1T of vegetable oil in it. When the oil smokes add the meat and crisp in the pan. Drain meat onto a towel.

Stuff the meat into a pita and garnish with your choice of pickles and sauce (we use amba, an Israeli pickled mango sauce).