Monday, March 12, 2012

Corned Beast

Ah, SO sorry I forgot to put a picture up. It's my sourdough roasted and sliced horizontally, my sauerkraut, my mustard, this wicked winey corned beef and I think melted cheese too. Browned in butter, GASP!


If you haven't done so already, now's the time to start your corned beast for St. Patrick's Day. I did it yesterday, and a full week to cure is about right. The reason to do it is not cost: corned beef was $3.99 a pound in the supermarket yesterday and raw brisket was $4.99. You do it because it's fun! And tastes better, because you can do whatever you like with it. Moreover, you don't need a buy a huge honking hunk of beast if you only want a bit. I bought a 2 lbs brisket end with a nice cap of fat. To start: sprinkle generously with salt - a little more than if you were just going to cook this. (I actually used a red salt impregnated with French wine that my friend Lissa in Paris gave me, but regular sea salt is fine.) Then very lightly sprinkle with pink salt. (Instacure #1) Then add whatever you like - I used juniper berries sent to me by Miss Butterpowered Bike from Colorado. Plus coriander, black pepper and bay leaves. Throw it in a leakproof ziplock and into the fridge for a week. Now here's the divergence. Forget boiling it. Much of the flavor is lost in the water. So after it's thoroughly cured, rinse it off. I like to put it in a casserole on a bed of sauerkraut (your own), add water or other liquid (such as beer - your own), cover and bake slowly for about 3 or 4 hours undisturbed. Serve on toasted rye (your own) with a good smear of mustard (also you own) along with the kraut. It's LOVELY.

6 comments:

Maya said...

Ken, that sounds so good! I may just have to buy some brisket today. Yum!

Juana Isabella/Donna said...

That sounds great Ken. What time shall I be there for dinner :-)

Ken Albala said...

End of the week! Actually we should definitely cook together and eat sometime.

lostpastremembered said...

I wish I could have done it again for St Pats... the flavor was fabulous and I will never buy a pre-done spiced beef again. Can't wait to try it again soon

we are never full said...

damn this looks good. we just did corned beef heart (right up your alley?) and made a Reuben Sammy out of it. Friggin delish but your sandwich looks great. i just wish i had looked at your brining ingredients before we did ours. love the juniper berries addition!

we are never full said...

damn this looks good. we just did corned beef heart (right up your alley?) and made a Reuben Sammy out of it. Friggin delish but your sandwich looks great. i just wish i had looked at your brining ingredients before we did ours. love the juniper berries addition!