Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Corned Beef and Cabbage with Herb Buttered Potatoes

You know what I hate - waiting to make a recipe because you have a preconceived notion of how it's going to taste (not good) only to find out you were 100% wrong. And then you kick yourself for not making it sooner and lament all those wasted meal opportunities. That's how I've felt about the meal most people associate with St. Patrick's Day - corned beef and cabbage. I love corned beef, I love cabbage, so why did I think the meal was going to be bland, boring and tasteless?

SP has hinted that he'd like corned beef and cabbage on March 17 for years, but I always balked at it. This year I finally decided to make him happy and asked for recommendations on my cooking board. This Sandra Lee recipe for Corned Beef and Cabbage with Herb Buttered Potatoes came highly recommended and sounded great.

corned beef

The only real change I made was to the cooking method. I've mentioned before that my slow-cooker and I don't get along, so I opted to make this in my trusty Dutch oven. I cooked it low and slow for 5 hours and when it came time to slice the meat was practically falling apart (in a good way). I snuck a taste off the cutting board for quality control and was floored by the amazing flavor.

Baby Girl asked for a taste of the raw cabbage and enjoyed it, so I was hopeful for the finished product. Result - she loved all of it, the corned beef, the cabbage, the potatoes and the carrots. My only complaint was the small size of the corned beef meant we had just enough for dinner and leftovers for lunch. Next time I'll buy double the size so we have enough for sandwiches.

The meat and vegetables were tender, the cabbage was flavorful and the whole thing (even the buttered potatoes) took next to no effort. I'll definitely be making this again next year - I'm a corned beef and cabbage convert for sure.

Corned Beef and Cabbage with Herb Buttered Potatoes
Slightly modified from Sandra Lee

Corned Beef:
3 pounds corned beef brisket with spice packet (larger if you want more leftovers)
4 carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
2 medium onions, chopped
1 small head green cabbage, cored, roughly chopped
2 cups apple juice
1 cup water

2 pounds baby red potatoes, sliced in 1/2
1/2 stick butter, softened
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees.

Put the carrots and onions on the bottom of a large Dutch oven, then put the corned beef on top. Arrange the chopped cabbage around the beef. Add the apple juice and water along with the contents of the spice packet. Cover and place in the oven. Cook 5 hours until the beef is tender. Remove the beef and vegetables to a platter and keep warm.

Add potatoes to a pot of salted water and bring to a boil. Cook until the potatoes are tender, about 12 to 15 minutes. Drain and return them to the pot. Add the butter, garlic, parsley, and salt, and pepper, to taste. Gently combine so that all the potatoes are evenly coated. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve with corn beef and vegetables.

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