Thursday, March 17, 2011

Make your own Corned Beef.

I grow my own food, and purchase beef from a local rancher. The butcher will cut and package my beef any way I want. The cuts at the foreshank of the steer are chuck, roasts and steak, and a lower cut of beef called a brisket. This is the usual cut used to make corned beef.

Home Cured Corned Beef  is easy to make, if you plan ahead. You can also use other lower cuts of beef.

1 brisket, 6-9 pounds
3 C kosher salt
5-7 quarts of water
3 cloves of garlic, peeled
20 whole peppercorns
20 whole cloves
4 bay leaves
6 springs of thyme or 1T dried

Dissolve salt in water. Add rest of the ingredients. Place in a large zip lock bag. Place in a glass baking dish and place a heavy object on top, to weight down the bag.
Turn meat every six-ten hours.
Keep refrigerated, and turned for 5-12 days.
Rinse and cook.

Here is how I cook the corned beef.

Place the rinsed brisket in a big pot and cover with water.
Add 1/2 onion, unpeeled, and two-three stocks of celery, left whole.
Bring the water  to a soft boil, then lower to your lowest setting and cook slowly for three-four hours.
At this point, test the meat. If it cuts easily, remove the brisket from the broth, and keep it warm in some broth in another pot, and add these vegetables to the original pot.
7 carrots, cut in chunks
3 potatoes cut in bigger pieces
3 rutabagas left whole
4 stalks of celery cut small
Cook another hour before adding quarters of cabbage and a bunch of parsley.
Within fifteen minutes, or when the vegetables are all soft,  slice the brisket on the bias and serve   two-three slices on a plate with  vegetables, and a generous  dollop of mustard and butter on the side.

Cold beer will do it justice.

(Save the broth! It will be used as flavoring stock for your future soups. I freeze mine in quart jars, easy to freeze, and easy to defrost too.)


  1. I have book marked this one sound interesting. Thanks. Diane

  2. Thank you so much for sharing this! I've been wanting to try making my own corned beef for awhile now!

  3. we had to move our blog. Hacked repeatedly. Couldn't find a way to contact you with new address and am reluctant to post it.
    - Trish

  4. I have never made this well. Perhaps if I am ever cooking for more than a few again I will try it!

  5. I'm excited to try this...don't think we'll wait for next year either:-)

  6. Rob and Trish, so sorry to hear about your woes. I had the same event happen to me. Do you have a new blog?

  7. Amy, the trick is cooking the meat very slowly. If you want, you can bake the corned beef, wrapped in foil, at 300 for 3-4 hours. Once it is tender, you can serve it with veggies of your choice.

    Or, pick up sliced corned beef from a deli!

  8. I'm so impressed at your gardening skills. We are always planting for a bountiful harvest but have yet to realize it. Oh well, the trying is fun.

  9. Sally, in truth, I only plant what thrives here: peas, lettuces, broccoli and cabbages, beans, favas, some squashes, even cucumbers. And, some years, last one, the weather is too wet too long to give us much.

    I still have to purchase many vegetables that I can't grow, and for these I visit the farmer's markets, buy as much as I can and can or freeze what I can't use.

    We purchased a stand-alone freezer for such abundance.

  10. Lovely post, it's nice to know someone else makes their own home made corned beef...