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St. Patrick's Day corned beef: How long to cook & how much brisket to buy

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Wondering how much corned beef brisket to buy and how long to cook it? St. Patrick's Day corned beef and cabbage dinner recipes are a top Google search this weekend with everyone preparing for the Feast of Saint Patrick on Monday, March 17, 2014.

A corned beef brisket can take up to eight hours to cook if you use a pressure cooker or crock pot. This inexpensive cut of meat cooks a bit faster when you bake it in the oven.

This traditional St. Patrick's Day feast is easy to make, but it is important to know what size brisket to buy before you can calculate how long it should cook. To make corned beef, you can boil the brisket, cook it quickly in a pressure cooker, roast it in the oven or slow cook the inexpensive cut of beef in a crock pot.

What size brisket should you buy? Allow for about one pound per person. Allow for about one pound per person if you buy a point cut brisket.

If you choose to buy a flat cut brisket, buy approximately one-half pound per person. Add an extra half-pound to the total due to shrinkage. That means you would need a two and one-half pound flat cut brisket for four people.

How long does it take to cook a brisket when making corned beef and cabbage?

An average size brisket will take about an hour in a pressure cooker. There are other methods you can use, including boiling, slow cooker and baking in the oven.

Allow 25 minutes a pound when boiling. If you opt for the slow cooker, expect your St. Patrick's Day dinner to take between five and eight hours to cook, depending on the size of the brisket.

Bake a brisket in the oven for about three to four hours, depending on the thickness of the cut and the weight.

Check out some of these recipes for St. Patrick's Day corned beef and cabbage:

Pressure Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage

Whole Foods Corned Beef and Cabbage

Alton Brown's Corned Beef and Cabbage

Crockpot Corned Beef and Cabbage

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