I’m really too exhausted to share much more than a simple recipe today. I didn’t sleep much at all last night, and yet we were able to pull off a fabulous corned beef feast, including having three friends join us for dinner.
And so, the recipe:
CORNED BEEF AND CABBAGE
- one corned beef brisket
- one large head of green cabbage, cored and quartered
- four or five large russet potatoes, peeled and quartered
- ten carrots, peeled and “chunked”
- brown sugar glaze (recipe to follow)
Place the brisket and the contents of the spice packet (which usually is included with the brisket) in a sufficiently large ovenproof kettle or roaster. Add enough water to almost cover the brisket (and any remaining juice from the bag the brisket came in) to the kettle. Bring to a boil first on the stovetop and then place the kettle in the oven at 350 degrees. Braise until the meat is done but not falling apart (several hours, depending on the size of the brisket). Turn the brisket over once in the broth about half way through baking.
Remove the brisket from the broth and place it in a shallow baking dish. Strain the pickling seeds out of the broth (or if they do not bother you, leave them in, as they do not hurt the vegetables any), but be sure to save all the broth to cook the vegetables.
Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees.
Place one-half cup of butter and one-half cup of brown sugar in a microwave-safe dish and microwave, covered, at intervals until melted and bubbling, stirring often. Spoon this mixture over the brisket and then return it to the oven until the glaze is dark and bubbly and the kitchen begins to smell fabulously like candy. It could take up to half an hour. Do not try to rush this step by using the broiler. Patience is a virtue.
In the meantime, place the carrots and potatoes in the broth and bring to a boil on the stovetop. When the carrots and potatoes are almost done, add the cabbage and cook until the cabbage is al dente and the potatoes and carrots are tender.
Serve the vegetables and broth as a soup in wide, shallow bowls (for presentation purposes, of course). We have always added vinegar at the table, which brightens the flavor of any cabbage dish. As for the corned beef, some add it to their bowls, some eat it with mustard, but I like to eat it just the way it is.
And don’t forget the great sandwiches you can make from the leftovers. With a little melted Havarti on top, oh the pleasant dreams I will have tonight in anticipation of tomorrow’s lunch.