On Saint Patrick's Day this year it occurred to me that we've never made the traditional Corned Beef & Cabbage. Actually, I've never done anything with corned beef. It had been on my mind because of this post over at Big Red Kitchen -- it was the mention of Horseradish Gravy and Irish Eggs Benedict that caught my attention and got stuck in my head for a few days. So, I went to the grocery that morning and bought a corned beef brisket (surprised they weren't sold out), and all the other stuff to keep this going for a few days.
None of these recipes are original, so I'm not going into a lot of detail, but I'll provide the links to the recipes I did use.
DAY 1: The first step was cooking the usual corned beef & cabbage. I used this recipe from AllRecipes.com because it looked super simple, and it was. To make it even easier, I used the baby carrots. It turned out great (it's pretty much foolproof), but what made it special was the horseradish gravy. Here's the recipe from Kitchen Klique that BRK provided. As suggested, I tripled the recipe. Next time I'll make even more.
|Corned Beef & Cabbage, enhanced by Horseradish Gravy.|
No joke, I'll make corned beef again just so I can make the gravy again (the broth from your corned beef is critical). Even if you're like my wife and you don't like corned beef, you'll like this gravy on your vegetables and just about anything else.
DAY 2: Time to make Corned Beef Hash. The only time I ever eat corned beef hash is for breakfast while camping, usually mixed up with an egg, a bunch of cheese, and a ton of ketchup. Like Dinty Moore Beef Stew, I never particularly liked it, but for some reason I enjoy both while camping in cold weather. I never considered that corned beef hash might actually taste good if you make it fresh instead of eating it out of a can.
I used another recipe from AllRecipes.com that looked really simple, and it was. If you try it, use three potatoes instead of six. I used some reserved broth from the night before.
|Corned Beef Hash + Egg & Ketchup.|
As expected, it was much better than the store-bought canned version. My assistant even liked it, and I couldn't get him to eat more than one bite of the other stuff while camping. Even though he was sick, he asked for more this time.
DAY 3: This is what I'd been looking forward to -- Irish Eggs Benedict. I rarely make Eggs Benedict because the Hollandaise Sauce is intimidating. It's really not that hard to get right, but all the recipes I see are replete with warnings about how you have to use a double boiler and even then you'll probably still fail miserably on your first attempt. They really take the fun out of it. But this recipe from BRK looked easy enough, and I already had the corned beef hash and the horseradish gravy ready to go.
|Irish Eggs Benedict.|
Awesome. I did a couple things different from the recipe -- I poached the eggs and I just used the leftover corned beef hash from the previous day. Of course I screwed up the Hollandaise sauce on the first try -- I got distracted and let the egg yolks scramble a bit and make everything clumpy. On the second try I made sure to remove it from the heat as soon as it was warmed through and it was perfect. It really is easy if you pay attention!
We definitely saved the best for last (logistically, you kinda have to) and it was a fine way to end Three Days of Corned Beef.
|The obligatory motorcycle or Corvette pic that has nothing to do with nothing.|
Turn 1 Lap 1 of the 2012 Red Bull Indy GP @ IMS.
FUTURE PROJECT: Next time, we're going to use Meathead's recipe to cure our own corned beef brisket. Meathead has never led me wrong before, and I have no doubt the homemade version will be much better than the store-bought brisket. I've already ordered the Pink Curing Salt, so hopefully we can do this soon.
And I hope to do two -- one to cook traditionally and use for the above recipes again, and a second to smoke and make Pastrami. I've never tried any recipes that take much more than 24 hours (brined smoked turkey, maybe?) or 72 hours at the most (does 3-day pizza dough count?), so anything that takes a week or more will be something new for sure...