Friday, March 20, 2009

The Absolute Best Corned Beef and Cabbage

While corned beef and cabbage, also known as NEBD, or New England Boiled Dinner, is a St. Patrick's Day staple, I generally make it several times a year. While contemplating the hash I'm going to make from the leftovers tomorrow, I thought I'd share my fool proof method for corned beef and cabbage.

*What You Need:
*4-5 pounds of flat cut ( more expensive but much leaner and easier to carve than point cut) corned beef brisket
*6 onions
*2 large celery ribs, with leaves, sliced into 2 inch chunks
*16 cloves
*1 bay leaf
*6 peppercorns
*Several springs of parsley
*1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, or a sprig of fresh
*2 large garlic cloves, peeled
*8 potatoes
*6 carrots
*1 medium head of cabbage

*Step 1: Cook the beef with seasonings
1.Remove the meet from the package and rinse.
2.Discard the seasoning packet the manufacturer included.
3.Place the meat in a large pot.
4.Take 2 of the onions, peel them, and cut into quarters. Stud each onion quarter with 4 cloves, and add to the pot. Do not worry if they fall apart.
5.Add the celery, bay leave, peppercorns, parsley, rosemary and garlic to the pot.
6.Cover all with water, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours.
7.Remove the meat to a second large pot. Strain the liquid over the meat, and discard the vegetables and seasonings.
8.You can stop and refrigerate the meat over night at this point, or continue.

*Step 2: Add the vegetables

1. Peel the remaining 4 onions and the potatoes and add them to the pot.
2. Bring everything back to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Peel the carrots, cut into 2 inch chunks, and add them to the pot. Adjust the heat if needed to keep it simmering.
4. Cook for 30 minutes.
5. Core and quarter the cabbage, and add it to the pot.
6.Bring everything back to a boil, reduce the heat and cook for 10 minutes more, or until everything is tender.

*Step 3: Serve and enjoy
1.Slice the meat across the grain and place on a platter, surrounded by the vegetables.
2.Serve with brown mustard, Irish Soda bread, fresh butter, and plenty of Guinness.
3.Any leftovers should be stored in the broth, and reheated in the liquid.

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