Yes, we know, St. Patrick’s Day isn’t until two weeks from now, but we’re here to help you get an early start on the all the fun! Â One of the recipes needs two weeks to cure in your fridge, but the hands-on times is minutes! Â Trust me I tried it this weekend. Â Hurry, if you start this recipe soon, it will be ready just in time for St. Patrick’s Day.
I found thisÂ homemade corned beef recipe in Martha Stewart Magazine last year, but was too late to try it for St. Patrick’s Day in 2009. Â I really wanted to try it, so I saved it for this year.
I made mine over the weekend and I was shocked by how simple it was to make. Â The biggest challenge was finding pink curing salt, which surprisingly wasn’t available at Whole Foods or any other local grocery stores or even Sur La Table.
Rather than keep searching, I took my search online and found out that pink curing salt contains sodium nitrite to keep the meat pink. Â As I am not a fan of sodium nitrite, I researched further andÂ discovered that kosher salt should do the trick, so I just used kosher salt without the pink curing salt.
The recipe says that the corned beef will be ready in two weeks. Â Since it takes awhile to cook (3 to 3.5 hours on the stove or 4 to 5 hours in slow cooker on medium or 7 to 8 hours in a slow cooker on low), I decided this is a recipe much better suited for weekend cooking. Â We are going to cook it on March 11th, a bit before the actual day, but should still make St. Patrick’s Day fun as I will be making Corned Beef Hash for dinner on the actual day!
Making the brine was surprisingly easy. Â Hands-on time was about 15 minutes total! Â I did have to wait an hour or so for the liquid to cool, but who says you have to be in the kitchen for that?
I made it with a 3lb beef brisket instead of 5lb as there are just two of us. Â I found that a gallon size Ziploc bag was the perfect fit for the meat and the liquid.
And, since I enjoy doctoring recipes, I am taking the first recipe up until just before the cooking point and then switching to this ale-braised corned beef, Brussel sprouts and carrots recipe that I found in Real Simple. Â We try not to eat too many potatoes in our house and I am not a big fan of cabbage, so Brussel sprouts and carrots sound more appealing to me. Â And, if you only want to try the simpler recipe, Pape’s Meat Co. in Millbrae, where I bought my beef brisket,Â has promised me that if mine doesn’t turn out, their corned beef is really, really good. Â Added bonus, their corned beef is already, well corned.
Are you planning to cook corned beef for St. Patrick’s Day? Â If you have another delicious recipe, please share a link in the comments below.
Next week, Elissa and I will share ideas for a fun St. Patrick’s night on the town in San Francisco and San Jose!