Brisket is a cut of beef usually obtained from the lower breast region or pectoral muscles of a cow or veal. These hefty cuts of meat may weigh from 08 to 20 pounds and are sold boneless.
Usually, the lower breast region is the most exercised part of the cow, and therefore it is tough meat with a considerable amount of fat and connective tissues. Its toughness makes it perfect for slow cooking.
A full brisket, known as a packer, comprises two pectoral muscles. The first cut is a leaner part, usually easier to prepare. In contrast, the second cut, also known as the brisket point, contains more internal marbling than the flat, making it juicier when cooked.
Generally, brisket is cooked slow, i.e., in an oven, slow cooker, or grill. The BBQ brisket, among many brisket recipes, is also very popular in many countries, including the UK.
Though the UK Muslims love brisket, do you ever ponder whether it is halal or haram? This blog will discuss whether brisket is halal or haram, so keep reading.
Islamic Principle of Halal and Haram
Muslims worldwide seek guidance from Quran and Sunnah for leading their lives according to Islamic teachings. These two primary guidance sources contain timeless principles that modern Muslims can follow without hesitation.
Allah (SWT), in Surah Al Baqarah, has clarified the halal and haram food for Muslims.
“He has only forbidden to you dead animals, blood, the flesh of swine, and that which has been dedicated to other than Allah. But whoever is forced [by necessity], neither desiring [it] nor transgressing [its limit], there is no sin upon him. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” (Quran 2:173)
(Source of above-cited Quranic Verse: https://quran.com/2/173?translations=84,17,95,101,22,20)
This Quranic verse is the guiding principle for distinguishing halal food from haram in Islam. According to this verse of the Holy Quran, carrion, i.e. dead meat, the blood, and swine (pig) meat, is haram. And also, if you slaughter any halal animal and dedicate it to others than Allah, it is haram.
In addition to these haram foods, some parts of halal animals are also either haram or undesirable (makrooh) to eat. These haram or undesirable parts include:
- Flowing blood (Absolutely haram)
- Male genitals
- Female genitals
- Haraam marrow (Spinal marrow)
- The two muscles of the neck that stretch up to the shoulders
- The blood from the liver
- The blood from the spleen
- The blood that comes out from the meat after slaughtering
- The blood from the heart
- Bile, i.e. the yellow fluid from inside the gallbladder
- The nasal fluid, which is present mainly in sheep
- The transforming of sperm into blood
- The transforming of sperm into flesh
- The transforming of sperm into an animal that dies without slaughter
Though the blood is absolutely haram, there may be differences in opinion among jurists and mujtahids of different Islamic schools of thought. Therefore, it is advisable to seek guidance from an established scholar of your school of thought before making any final decision regarding eating the above-stated parts of a halal animal.
Is Brisket Halal or Haram?
Traditionally, brisket comes from cows and cows are halal animals. Therefore, brisket is halal as long as they follow the permissible hand slaughtering method.
In the UK, cattle are pre-stunned before slaughter. Also, you must ensure that a mature Muslim slaughters the cattle while pronouncing the name of Allah. You should seek the guidance of an established Islamic scholar on the issue of slaughtering pre-stunned animals.
The Halal Slaughtering Process (Zabihah)
In the above-cited Quranic Verse, it is crystal clear that the Muslim must pronounce the name of Allah at the time of the slaughtering of a halal animal. According to Islamic tradition, the halal slaughtering process (Zabihah) consists of the following steps.
- The animals must be without any wounds or injury marks.
- A mature Muslim (who has reached puberty) must slaughter the animal.
- The Muslim must pronounce the name of Allah at the time of slaughtering, and the animal must be facing Makkah.
The Holy Quran and Sunnah are the two primary sources of guidance for all Muslim populace. So, in light of the Quran and Sunnah, the brisket source must be halal and follow the Islamic Zabihah method.
However, before taking a final decision, it is of utmost necessity to seek guidance from an established Islamic scholar who can make an informed decision based on the teachings of the Holy Quran and the Sunnah.