Local Chef Offers Authentic St. Patrick's Day Recipes
Cooking at home this St. Patrick's Day? Try Barrington chef Erin Bailey's recipe for corned beef and root vegetables.
Corned Beef is beef that has been preserved in a salt brine and flavored with herbs and spices.
While the dish of corned beef with cabbage and root vegetables is often associated with St Patrick’s Day cuisine, it is actually Irish-American (the Irish are more accustomed to bacon and cabbage).
Whichever you choose to serve this year, both are simple to prepare and considered by many as an annual treat.
You can find already preserved corned beef in the market, but I prefer to make my own. Take note that you will need to plan ahead for this extra step.
Corned Beef with Cabbage and Root Vegetables
6 cups water
2 cups Guinness stout
1 1/2 cups coarse kosher salt
1 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
1/4 cup pickling spices
1 6- to 8-pound flat-cut beef brisket, trimmed
Corned beef and vegetables:
1 12-ounce bottle Guinness stout
4 bay leaves
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
2 whole allspice
12 baby turnips, trimmed, or 3 medium turnips trimmed and quartered
12 baby red beets, trimmed, or 3 medium red beets trimmed and quartered*
8 unpeeled medium white-skinned or red-skinned potatoes (about 3 pounds)
6 medium carrots, peeled
2 large onions, peeled, quartered through root ends
2 medium parsnips, peeled, cut into 2-inch lengths
1 head of cabbage, quartered
Pour 6 cups water and beer into large deep roasting pan. Add coarse salt; stir until dissolved. Add sugar; stir until dissolved. Mix in pickling spices. Pierce brisket all over with tip of small sharp knife. Submerge brisket in liquid, then top with heavy platter to weigh down. Cover and refrigerate 4 days.
Remove brisket from brine. Stir liquid to blend. Return brisket to brine; top with heavy platter. Cover; refrigerate 4 days. Remove brisket from brine. Rinse with cold running water. Wrap corned beef in plastic, cover with foil, and refrigerate. This will keep for two days in the refrigerator.
For corned beef and vegetables:
Place corned beef in very large wide pot. Add stout and enough water to cover by 1 inch. Make a cheesecloth sachet of bay leaves, coriander seeds, and allspice and tie with kitchen string to secure. Add spice sachet to pot with beef; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until beef is tender, about 2 1/4 hours. About 30 minutes before beef is finished cooking, add the vegetables to the pot. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until tender.
Discard spice bag. To serve, slice beef against grain into 1/4-inch thick slices. Arrange beef and vegetables on platter. Serve with Irish Soda Bread and mustard or horseradish.
*Because we are not using sodium nitrate to preserve the color of the beef, I add beets to my corned beef and cabbage to give it that nice, red color. This is optional.