It is St. Paddy’s Day and time to make an Irish styled meal of corned beef and cabbage. This meal is a traditional meal in our good ole’ USA; however, this meal is not a St. Paddy’s Day tradition in Ireland, and this recipe does not follow the cooking style of the Irish meal of corned beef and cabbage. The traditional Irish method of cooking this meal is not what I have found to be the best method; tradition calls for this meal to be boiled with all ingredients in one pot. Cooking this meal by the throw-everything-together-and-boil method changes the texture and flavor of the corned beef, and your vegetables with be too oily from the meat juices.
3 lb corned beef
Bottle of pickling spice
1 head of celery
2 lb of medium –large red potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 head of cabbage, cut into wedges
1 lb of carrots, peeled and cut in 2 – 3 parts
The first step always when cooking any meat: allow the meat to sit at room temperature for approximately 20 – 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 300°.
The next step is rinse the meat, and throw away that little spice packet that is packaged with the corned beef. Roughly cut 6 ribs of celery and one white onion into large chunks. Place the vegetables in the bottom of the roasting pan, with the onions centered for the meat to be placed upon, and the celery placed around the onion.
Lay the untrimmed corned beef, with fat side up, on top of the onion, and add approximately 3 – 4 cups of water. Last step – add a layer of the store-bought pickling spice on top of beef. Place foil on top of pan and seal tightly where steam cannot leak out.
Place in oven and set a timer for 90 minutes. I recommend never checking your meat in the three hour cook time, because you will interrupt the cooking time by releasing heat and steam. Make sure you add enough water in the beginning and you will not have to check it.
At the 90 minute alarm, begin two pots of water to simmer for the vegetables, and begin prepping the vegetables. I use one large stock pot for the potatoes and carrots, and the smaller pot for the cabbage. I will boil the cabbage once, rinse, and add to my other vegetables. Add salt to the pot of carrots and potatoes.
Do not overcook the potatoes, cut where the texture is a medium soft. When the meat is completely cooked, which for three pounds the approximation at 300° is 3 hours- allow meat to rest while still tightly wrapped, for 20 minutes.
Then shave the top layer of fat and pickling spice from the meat. Discard the celery and onion. Add two to three tablespoons of meat juice to vegetables if so desired, and slow simmer for 5 minutes.
Thinly slice corned beef along the grain, and arrange with vegetables on a platter. Serve with horseradish and mustard.
Happy St. Paddy's Day!