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Saturday, March 17, 2007

Boiled Corned Beef & Cabbage

Paula sent this one in last week, just got around to it.

In the United States, corned beef is also associated with Saint Patrick’s Day when many Irish Americans eat a traditional meal of corned beef and cabbage. Corned beef was originally a substitute for Irish Bacon in the late 1800s. Irish immigrants living in New York City’s Lower East Side sought an equivalent in taste and texture to their traditional Irish bacon (similar to Canadian bacon), and learned about this cheaper alternative to bacon from their Jewish neighbors.

A similar dish is the boiled dinner, consisting of corned beef, cabbage, and root vegetables such as carrots, turnips, and potatoes, which is popular in New England.

Corned beef is also used to make the cold cut of Pastrami. made the Pastrami Sandwich famous.

Here in Boston, it is said that everyone is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day. The following meal is done in one pot. I have friends of non Irish descent tell me when they have tried a boiled dinner, it had no flavor. I ask “How did you prepare it?”

“I cooked it in a pot of water and dumped the water. I did this three times and then cooked it with the vegetables.” Or that they cooked each item in a separate pot.

I then laugh and tell them that they had dumped all of the flavor out. There is no need to cook this more than once. The flavor from the meat cooks into the vegetables in the pot as it cooks.

The key to a great tasting boiled dinner is the beef itself. I have tried several corned beefs and have found a local butcher who cures the meat himself and by far it is the best corned beef I have ever tasted. I make these several times a year.
Boiled Corned Beef & Cabbage

Paula's Corn Beef

You will need :

One Very Large Pot, that’s it (Ha! now a simple dinner from one who has used every pot in the house)

Yukon Gold PotatoesIngredients:
  1. 6 – 8 Pound Corned Beef ( I use a thin end Grey Cured)
  2. Yukon Gold Potatoes*, peeled and left whole (2 per person)
  3. 5 Pounds Carrots peeled
  4. Head of Cabbage (quartered)
  5. 1 Turnip, peeled and cubed ( you may leave it out if you don’t like it)
*You can use most any potato, however I find the Yukon to have the best flavor for this meal.


The whole process takes approx. 3 hours

  1. Place meat in the pot, fill 3/4 full with cold water
  2. Place pot on burner and turn heat to high
  3. Once water boils, lower heat to a simmer (low boil) and cook for an hour
  4. Add carrots and continue simmering for an hour
  5. Add potatoes and turnip and continue simmering for an hour
  6. Add cabbage and cook until tender
  7. Remove meat and slice onto platter
  8. Enjoy!
Pickled Corn Beef (Not Paula's - but to give you an idea of the meat)

Corned Beef - made well - is an incredible eat - if one forgets about the cholesterol and such! Paula is right though - it is all in the cut of the meat, as is actually anything we cook from meat. The trick is to make a medium cut of meat - taste like the Garden In Eden. This is not complicated just a bit time consuming though the "kitchen" part is really not that much. So 2 stars for difficulty. Oh by the way - add a few onions to the recipe. If you can get small baby onions they are the best with it.

1 Fire Comments - Click To Post A Comment:

Paula and Elwood's Poetic Palace said...

I of course made this wonderful dinner today and will forward a picture of the meat.

You can add almost anything you like to the pot as it will fill with flavors from the meat.