I’m not one bit Irish and neither is my husband, and yet each year about a month before St. Patrick’s Day the requests for corned beef start coming. It turns out my husband likes corned beef, but he LOVES the sandwiches afterwards (with plenty of spicy mustard).
I remember eating and not liking corned beef as a kid. Stringy meat, limp cabbage… UGH. A few years ago though, I finally discovered a corned beef technique that made a believer out of me. Especially when I started to think of it less as “corned beef” and more as brined, then braised brisket. This method takes things a step further by adding a sweet-salty-spicy glaze and finishing the meat under the broiler. With a few carrots, potatoes and some savoy cabbage steamed until just tender, I’m actually excited to eat this meal. As for Luca? Well the results were mixed. He picked around his dinner plate but ate a little bit of everything. I suppose in the world of preschool dining that is some kind of success….
Sweet-Salty-Spicy Glazed Corned Beef
Glaze: 4 Tablespoons Brown Sugar, 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce, 2 teaspoons of Dry Mustard, 2 teaspoons of Grated Ginger
- In the morning chuck your corned beef into a slow cooker. Add enough water to just cover, a couple of tablespoons of whole peppercorns and a couple of bay leaves. This time I also threw in a head of garlic I sliced in half, a couple of carrots, a few halved shallots and some herbs from our garden.
- Cook on high until it comes up to temperature then cover and reduce to low and let it simmer away. The meat will be tough if you let the water boil, so a lazy simmer is best.
- When your meat is fully cooked and tender (I cooked mine about 6 hours), remove it from the slow cooker. Let excess juices drain off and trim off any extra fat that hasn’t melted off. Place the meat on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.
- Preheat your broiler while you make the glaze. Slather the glaze on the meat and pop it into the oven until the glaze is caramelized (5 minutes or so — keep your eye on it, since it will burn). After taking the meat out of the oven, let it rest 15-20 minutes, then slice thinly across the grain [warning, it will be a bit crumbly]. Serve with steamed potatoes, carrots and cabbage.