Monday, March 15, 2010

St. Patrick's Day

On Saturday night, my friend Amber hosted her annual St. Patrick's Day party. While I was sitting there eating her amazing corned beef with cabbage, potatoes, and carrots, I commented that I've never made corned beef. The main reason is that I've never had to - Amber has made it for me for the last eleven or twelve years. In fact, the first time I ever had corned beef, she made it. Aside from the food, which is delicious, her parties are always fun with St. Patty's decorations, games, cute place cards, kids, desserts made by friends, drinks (I enjoyed green lemonade this year . . . no Guinness for me).

So, if you don't have an Amber in your life to cook you delicious food for St. Patrick's Day, here is what she does:

Purchase a mid-range (quality and price) corned beef (ours was from Vons this year). The amount will depend on how many people you're cooking for. Add the meat and the juice and spices from the package to a pot and cover with water. Cook on low for at least 3 1/2 hours (Amber cooked hers for 6 hours this year). You can also use a crockpot. Occasionally skim the fat off the top as it's cooking. Take the meat out of the pot to rest and heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Strain the broth that the beef cooked in and add large chunks of carrots, potatoes and onions and simmer until tender. Add sliced cabbage the last few minutes. Drain.

Make a glaze of yellow mustard and brown sugar - I asked Amber the proportions and she says that she does it by look - until it's carmel colored. Trim the fat off the meat, slice, and brush with the glaze. Put it on a baking sheet and cook about 10 minutes. Serve with the vegetables & cabbage and enjoy!


  1. Unfortunately no Amber in my life. But, I do have a Bec. And, that looks like a great substitute!

    Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

  2. Thank you for this. My corned beef has never turned out right -- too tough, too stringy, too salty. But then I didn't know about the long slow cook.

  3. I've always been afraid to make corned beef. My grandmother made an awesome one. I always think of her this time of year.

  4. My one attempt produced tough meat and sloppy vegetables. I guess timing is everything.