Friday, March 17, 2006

The Recipe for The Feast

Because, however grandiose and grave I get, it still celebrates as a food holiday, here.

The Byerly recipe--at least, my version of it--for the St. Patrick's Day Almost Traditional Irish Dinner.

Glazed Corned Beef with Buttered Cabbage, Potatoes, and Mushrooms

You want:

Corned Beef Brisket or Round (usu. 2-3 lbs, handily packaged)

For glaze:
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp prepared mustard (with seeds is good)
1 tsp. honey

Several smallish white potatoes
One green cabbage
Several whole mushrooms--white, crimini/baby bella, any button-type.
About a half a stick (4 tbsp) of butter
About 1 tbsp parsley (dried is fine)

Big pot or dutch oven
Roasting pan
Small pan (or cup, if microwaving)
Good strong fork or tongs (for lifting the brisket from hot water)
Optional table knife or rubber scraper/froster

So, you get yourself a corned beef brisket/round. Cut the layer of fat right off, and any pieces of fat you can get to. (If you don't, it'll float, and get tough on the sides that are exposed!) Put the sucker in pot much larger than it is--try to keep the blood/"juices" with it, and the silly spice packs they give you are okay to add but not necessary--and cover it with water to about 2 inches above the beef. Bring it up to a simmer and cover it to cook it for roughly 45 minutes per pound (mine is 2.15 pounds, for instance, so it should go just over an hour and a half). Check on it a couple of times in the first few minutes--there will probably be foam which you should scoop off with your spoon and get rid of. It's unpleasant, you don't want it. If you threw in the spice pack, this is about the time you lose most of it with the foam (you can save it for after, though, if you want).

Wash your potatoes. Halve or quarter them into even pieces, maybe an inch and a half in any direction, but leave the skins on. (This is important because you're going to cook the hell out of them and they're too easy to have fall all apart without the skins--plus, they're good for you!) Wash your cabbage and quarter it. Wash your mushrooms and leave them whole. Mix the brown sugar and honey and mustard thoroughly until you've got a good, thick paste.

When you've got about 15 or 20 minutes left for the brisket to be simmering, toss in your potatoes with it. When the brisket's time is up, pull it out with your fork and/or tongs and let some of the water drip away, before plopping it into your roasting pan. Leave the potatoes cooking! Turn the oven on to Broil after setting the rack near if not at the top (leave enough room so that your brisket isn't touching the element, of course!) Throw the cabbage and mushrooms in with the potatoes--you want that all to cook about another 10 minutes. Glaze the brisket with whatever implement you see fit, with as much as you can get on it. Save any extra glaze.

Toss the brisket into the oven. You want the glaze to caramelize and the top to just toast a little--you only want to give it a couple of minutes. It'll depend on your oven, your brisket, and your tastes--keep an eye on it! Once it looks beautiful, haul it back out.

Let the brisket sit for a few minutes while melting your butter. Once it has melted, clarify it (skim off the white bubbly goop at the top with your Spoon). Carve the brisket into good, thick slices while waiting for the cabbage, potatoes, and mushrooms' time to be up. Once it is, you can either separate the cabbage and mushrooms out into one bowl and put the potatoes in another or just bung them all into the same, before slathering them over with your melted butter. Sprinkle the parsley over the potatoes (or the big mess, if they're all together). The leftover glaze is good for individual pieces of the brisket at the table or for a spread for sandwiches for leftovers!

If I'd remembered correctly, I'd also have got a loaf of Russian or Jewish Rye bread, pref. w/ Carroway seeds in it, warmed the bread, and let another few tablespoons of butter sit out to soften. But I did not do that, this time. So it's dark rye or sourdough for us, tonight.

I'm going to go start cooking, now. If I realize I've mistaken anything here too badly (like needing more butter!), I'll fix it. :) There's a certain amount of leeway with EVERYTHING here.

And Tada! Dinner!

1 comment:

Doc Nagel said...

Yum yumminy yum-yum.

I'm approximately 0% Irish, but this is now my third-favorite holiday of the year, behind only Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Aside from yum, I'd like to add, goddamn English. (I'm approximately 25% English, or so I've been told.)