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Corned Beef and Cabbage

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Corned Beef and Cabbage edge photo by Sheridan Kelley

A couple of weeks ago, I thought I'd take a shot at some quintessentially Irish (or Irish-American anyway) cuisine. Why not? It was St. Patrick's Day tis the season and all that.

Socorned beef. Food of the gods.

We briefly entertained the thought of actually corning our own beef, but upon further reflection we decided that that might be a little advanced for a neophyte such as me. After some scouring of cookbooks and the internet, we found some recipes that we liked and sort of mashed them together, leading to a recipe that was ours and ours alone.

And not to brag, but it was freaking delicious.

Corned Beef and Cabbage
  • 3 lb corned beef with seasoning packet
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 can dark beer (Guinness)
  • 1 tbsp pickling spices
  • 2 medium onions
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 cabbage
  • 6 small potatoes

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

Remove the corned beef from the packaging. Rinse beef and pat dry. Reserve the seasoning packet.

Mix brown sugar, pickling spice and seasoning packet in a small bowl.

Place the corned beef on a rack in a dutch oven or roasting pan. Rub the sugar and spice mixture over the corned beef to coat. (Don't forget underneath!)

Slice the onions into quarters and peel the garlic cloves. Place the onions and garlic around the outside of the beef.

Pour the beer gently over the coated corned beef to wet the sugar/spice mixture. Pour the remaining beer over the onions and garlic.

Cover and place in oven. Bake for 2 hours.

Quarter the cabbage, making sure to remove the stem. Cut the potatoes into quarters.

Remove corned beef from oven. Increase oven temp to 350 degrees.

Add potatoes and cabbage to the beef, garlic and onions in the dutch oven. Add a bit of water if necessary.

Cover and return the dish to the oven. Bake for 1 hour. Test with a meat thermometer; the beef should have an internal temp of at least 165 degrees.

When the meat is done, pull it from the oven and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with mustard and/or horseradish cream.

Thoughts

This was nice. We started with something relatively easy. Sure there was a lot to do and a fair number of steps, but it was all relatively simple. But it's the little things that make all the difference. For instance, while it might seem rudimentary to the cooks among you, I had never done any sort of rub, so creating our own was cool. Sure, it was just a couple of additions to the seasonings included with the beef, but still it was our own.

We both love the idea of cooking with beer, and with a dish that is so completely Irish, it made sense here. I had some reservations about the Guinness flavor being too prominent, but in the end, all that remained was a slight (and delicious) hint of stout.

I need to get better at chopping things.

While mustard is a go-to standard when it comes to corned beef, we also used a creamy horseradish sauce that paired beautifully with our ever-so-slightly beery beef. If you've never taken a ride on the horseradish train, I advise you to give it a whirl.

There are few things as delightful as the smell of a corned beef 15 minutes before it comes out of the oven.

Last modified on Thursday, 05 April 2012 19:14
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