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Corned Beef and Cabbage Buono Sanctus Palladius

03/17/07 | by JAdP | Categories: Food and Drink

What's an Italian doing celebrating Saint Paddy's day? Well, first, the holiday is much more an American holiday not Irish, right up there with Thanksgiving. Second, Palladius a.k.a. Patricius a.k.a. Patricus a.k.a Naomh Pádraig was possibly born in Roman Brittania or maybe Gaul, likely in the early 400's C.E. and thus, arguably had some Italian genes. &#59;) And third, where else am I going to get the raw materials for wonderful Reuben sandwiches and glorious corned beef hash?

Corned beef has no corn in it, but is named for the salt that is used to preserve the meat. Some say that it is so-called because the salt used are corn kernel sized crystals, and others that the salt exudes out the meat as it cures, looking like kernels of corn on top of the meat. Whichever, if you can, find a butcher who corns their beef the old fashioned way, without chemicals. The beef will be more grey than rosy. Most corned beef is the brisket cut, though a beef round, or, in California, the tri-tip [sirloin] is also used. I stick with a brisket.

If the corned beef you buy is very salty, you might want to soak it overnight in water or milk - ask your purveyor. Allow at least an half-pound of beef per person for the supper, and a quarter-pound for each sandwich you'll want to make next week, and a pound for the hash to go with the poached eggs for Sunday's brunch. :p

  1. Make up a Bouquet Garni of dried bay leaves, allspice nuts, coriander seeds, mustard seeds, cloves and black peppercorns in a piece of cheesecloth that's been doubled.
  2. Rinse and wipe down your meat; place it a large, heavy pot that is large enough that the meat can be covered with liquid.
  3. Place the Bouquet Garni on top of the meat and a whole, peeled sweet yellow onion.
  4. Pour a bottle of brown ale, steam or stout slowly over the Bouquet Garni; living in San Francisco, I generally go with Anchor Steam. A true Irishman would never waste stout in the pot, but would drink it whilst cooking - he might be willing to waste a Newcastle brown ale though :)) Maybe not.
  5. Cover the meat with water, the pot with its lid, and set on a high flame to achieve boiling and set to boil for 10 minutes
  6. Take off the lid, reduce the flame to low, skim fat and particulates from the water, set the flame to simmering, replace the lid, and simmer for 4 hours
  7. Remove the beef and let it sit on a plate. Some folk like to brown it in an oven, or even glaze it. I don't.
  8. Taste the cooking water. If it is greasy and salty, reserve a cup, throw the rest away, and fill the pot with fresh water, salting to taste, and bring to a boil; if it has a nice, delicate flavour use as is.
  9. Clean and quarter a cabbage or two or three, so that you have a quarter cabbage per person for supper, and an half-cabbage left over for bubble & squeak.
  10. Clean, peel and quarter red potatoes, one medium or half-large per person plus leftovers for hash and squeak. If there is any green on the potatoes assure that you remove it all, as this may be an algae that can cause food poisoning.
  11. Boil the potatoes and cabbage 10-15 minutes until fork tender
  12. Slice the cooled beef thin or thick as you and your guests like it, but only enough for the meal, as you'll want to cut the remainder differently for hash or sandwiches.
  13. Toast some caraway seeds in a fry pan, and then add butter, cooking until the butter just browns, pour over the cabbage quarters.
  14. Set out prepared mustard and grated horseradish, or sauces made from them, and serve it all with plenty of Irish Soda Bread and stout. Enjoy.

By the way, I like the last Irish Soda Bread recipe from the "Himself" (Ed O'Dwyer), but substitute one cup each of oat and barley buckwheat, not barley - what was I thinking - flours for two of the cups of stone ground whole wheat flour in the last recipe, and add currants that had been soaked for an half-hour in dry sherry [called "Spotted Dog" according to the Himself, the BookGuy. I also use Bob's Red Mill flours.

I never have, but I should ask a friend of mine for his recipes. He's a fine Irish lad, who is off this weekend cooking, in his words "Irish soul food" for his southern Baptist in-laws.

Éirinn go Brách.

Update: The mustard was Sierra Neveda Stout & Stone Ground Mustard, and the horseradish was Fred's, and here's what it all looked like...

Irish Soda Brown Bread on the board with Corned Beef sliced on a plate and Cabbage with Potatoes in a bowl
Click to view original size

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I'm Joseph A. di Paolantonio and this blog has two main foci: my interest in food, and my interest in the future. This provides a look into my personal life, and is separate from my consulting work…though there will be overlap. I am an independent researcher, working as a strategic consultant and I'm an executive with over 20 years of commercial experience with a technical interest in the intersection of Internet of Things, with advanced data management and analysis methods. I view data science as a team activity, and I feel that the IoT must be viewed as a system. I am leveraging my past activities to understand the adoption and impact of the IoT; first, as a system engineer in aerospace, where I developed Bayesian risk assessment methods for systems within the Space Transportation System (including the Space Shuttle), Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer, Gravity Probe B, and many more, and second, as a enterprise data warehousing, business intelligence and analytics professional. Between my aerospace and IT careers, I indulged my hobby of cooking by starting a food company, Montara Magic, centered around my chocolate sauces. My education combined chemistry, mathematics and philosophy. I performed research into molten salt fuel cells in graduate school, and in photovoltaic materials for a short time in industry. The lure of bringing the human race into space was strong, and when I was offered the chance to combine my chemistry and mathematics skills to develop new risk assessment and system engineering methods for space launch and propulsion systems – I couldn't resist. I perform independent research and strategic consulting to bring value from the Internet of Things, Sensor Analytics Ecosystems and data science teams.I am a caregiver, a lover of science fiction and speculative fantasy, and my passion to learn has led me to a pilot's license, an assistant instructor in SCUBA, nordic and alpine skiing, sea kayaking, and reading everything I can, in as many topics as I can.

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