Sunday, March 16, 2014

RaceDay Recipes: Corned Beef and Cabbage

Happy St. Patrick's Day! I grew up in a household that avoided boiled dinners like the plague. Thus, when I married into a bona fide Irish family, I was introduced to the traditional Corned Beef and Cabbage and promptly wondered why I have been denied this meal my entire life.  It is made of a fatty and salty cut of meat, but if you ignore suggestions to pour another pile of salt into the pot, the brine remains as seasoning for the massive servings of veggies and the fat will boil off. So, once a year, enjoy! Wear a little green and indulge.

Cook time: 90 minutes (20 min. per pound. Min. 90 minutes recommended)

You prep your veggies while the beef enjoys its initial bath in the pot.

Ingredients: (Serves 2)

1 2 lb. flat cut corned beef
1 parsnip
2 carrots
2 medium sized potatoes
2 small yellow onions
1/4 of a head of cabbage
(Turnip is also a traditional part of the meal, but I like parsnips. Add any other root veggies you may enjoy as well.)


Place beef, fatty-side up, in the bottom of a large pot. Pour cold water over the beef until it is entirely covered. Cook on medium-low heat to bring to a simmer. Cook for 40 minutes.

While beef simmers, peel and chop all vegetables into 3/4" cubes. To help remind you which veggie goes in next, take a large mixing bowl and place chopped cabbage, then onions, then potatoes, carrots and parsnip on top.

At 40 minutes, drop in parsnips and carrots. Continue simmering 30 minutes. Add hot water to pot to keep meat from drying out on top.

Add potatoes and onion. Continue simmering 10 minutes.

Add cabbage. Simmer 10 minutes.

Test beef for tenderness. A fork should slide through with little resistance. All vegetables should be fork soft.

Add time as needed.

Remove beef from pot. Let sit for at least 10 minutes. Drain vegetables and place in large serving bowl. Sprinkle with parsley. Slice beef across the grain with sharp knife, as thick or thin as you prefer.

Serve with your favorite mustard.

There will be leftovers! Which work well warmed over or minced into your very own corned beef hash.

This meal was born from large farming families with ingredients that were always on hand. It didn't intimidate the cooks back then, don't let its simplicity fool you into thinking it's harder to prepare now.


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