A Perfect Corn Beef and Cabbage for St. Patrick’s Day

| March 15, 2015

On March 17th, St. Patrick's Day will be celebrated around the world. In New York City that means parades, green beer, and Irish fare served with pride and camaraderie in the hundreds of Irish pubs around the city. Interestingly, some of the St. Patty’s Day food didn’t originate in Ireland.

In fact, corned beef and cabbage isn’t actually the national dish of Ireland. You won’t find it on the menu at the pubs in Dublin or Galway on March 17th.  So how did Corned Beef and Cabbage become the St. Patrick’s food of choice in the US?

During the time of the Irish immigration to the U.S., the first generation of Irish-Americans were in search of the comforting tastes of their homeland. On St. Paddy's Day that meant boiled bacon. But the immigrants were too poor to afford the high price of pork and bacon products, so they chose brined beef brisket, which was more plentiful and much less expensive than bacon at that time.

The brined or “corned” beef was a favorite cheap cut of the kosher butchers on New York’s Lower East Side and so the Irish immigrants adopted this dish made with potatoes and cabbage as their special fare to celebrate the birthday of their patron saint, St. Patrick.

Today, we are sharing an excellent recipe for this American Irish favorite in honor of Saint Patrick's Day.


Here is the recipe for the perfect St. Patrick’s Day Corned Beef and Cabbage:

Approximately 5 lbs of corned beef brisket
2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
2 cups water
1 tablespoon of minced garlic
2/3 of a stick of salted butter
1 Cup thinly sliced scallions
1/2 cup jarred or homemade horseradish sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
1 head green cabbage cut into wedges with the core removed
1 1/2 lbs small red potatoes, halved

For the Glaze:

3 tablespoons apricot or peach jam
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1.    Position oven racks in upper and lower thirds of oven. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Rub corned beef with garlic and peppercorns and place  in a roasting pan.  Add beef broth to the top of the beef and cover tightly with aluminum foil. Braise in upper third of oven for 3 to 3.5 hours or until brisket is fork tender.
2.    Meanwhile, place butter, green onions, horseradish, ground pepper and salt in glass measuring cup. Microwave on high 1 to 2 minutes or until butter melts, mix well. Place cabbage wedges on half of baking sheet and potatoes on the other half. Drizzle horseradish-butter mixture over vegetables, turning cabbage and tossing potatoes to coat. Cover with aluminum foil. Roast in lower third of 350°F oven with brisket for 55 minutes. Uncover vegetables, continue roasting 15 to 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender and begin to brown.
3.    Combine glaze ingredients. Remove cooked brisket from roasting pan, place on rack in broiler pan and brush with the glaze over brisket. Broil 2 to 3 minutes or until glaze is .bubbly and beginning to brown. Watch carefully so it doesn’t burn
4.    Carve brisket diagonally across grain into thin slices.
5.    Surround on a platter with the potatoes and cabbage.

Enjoy and Erin Go Bragh!

Charlotte Goldblatt