Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Luck o' the Irish

This post isn't so much about luck as it is corned beef. And maybe a little luck. I will say that I'm still getting the hang of blogging and therefore didn't document my process. Bummer right?! So while many people have already nursed and forgotten their St. Patty's Day hangovers and adventures I spent mine being productive. With Michael celebrating the kick off of March Madness instead of St. Patty's Day we had our own St. Patty's Day last night. Michael loves corned beef and cabbage, and unfortunately has missed out on it the last few St. Patty's Days so when we saw some at Costco we snagged it.

I on the other hand have always had a more skeptical relationship with corned beef. Not sure why but I've always had the image in my head of it being along the lines of SPAM. Unappetizing to say the least. And cabbage, well its cabbage. Enough said.

Looking for recipes I wanted something that wasn't labor intensive and had good reviews. The recipe I went with actually ended up coming to me. See good things happen to those to wait! Or those who are too lazy to find a recipe on their own...

Anyways, I'm on the daily recipe mailing list and when a good looking corned beef and cabbage recipe popped up in my Inbox I ran with it. It was simple, had two steps (love), had the basic ingredients that I've seen in other recipes and (get this!) was for a slow cooker. Hallelujah! Most of the other recipes had me taking the corned beef and cabbage in and out of the oven for multiple hours. I don't have that kind of time on a work night. Or really on a Saturday (reason: go to the paragraph above...lazy). Plus I love my Crock-Pot.

Corned Beef and Cabbage
Adapted from:

  • 4 large carrots, peeled and cut into matchstick pieces or a handful of baby carrots
  •  8 baby red potatoes, quartered
  • 1 onion, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 (4 pound) corned beef brisket with spice packet
  • 6 ounces beer
  • 1/2 head cabbage, or one small head coarsely chopped
  1. Place the carrots, potatoes, and onion into the bottom of a slow cooker, pour in the water, and place the brisket on top of the vegetables. Pour the beer over the brisket. Sprinkle on the spices from the packet, and cover.
  2. Cook the brisket for about 8 hours. An hour before serving, stir in the cabbage and cook for 1 more hour. 
Easy peasy. Other than me spilling the spice packet into the sink. Not recommended. I ended up cooking it on Low for 10 hours (8 and 10 hours are set for Low, so I'm not sure how someone would set it for High for 8 hours) and it turned out fantastic. By the time I got home (the house smelled delicious) it was on warm and I just threw the cabbage in the broth on the warm setting roughly an hour before serving and it turned out nicely. I had a brisket just under 4 pounds and it served 6 people just fine (and barely fit in the crock-pot by the time everything else was in there!).

We served it with bread (the bakery bread with garlic chunks in it...yum) but it also would have been really nice with sourdough bread. Michael had the idea to try the corned beef with Hoisin Sauce and claimed it turned out really good. Something to think about I suppose. 

Quite glad corned beef was a success, and I'm no longer scared of it. What were your St. Patty's Day adventures? You'll be reading about mine in the next couple days!

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