This is the quintessential Saint Patrick’s Day corned beef and cabbage boiled dinner served in New England. My paternal grandparents were 2nd generation Irish. Scotch Irish to be exact (and those from New England know there is a difference). I don’t think Gram used wine in her broth for this dish, although she sure did serve and enjoy with beer in celebration of the Irish holiday.
This dish is a family favorite, and really could feed up to eight people if you stretched it with appetizers, beer, and served with biscuits or a hearty soda bread. This version is heavy on the veggies because that is how my family likes it. If you are planning on entertaining a group or have a lot of meat-eaters in your clan, you could double the meat, wet ingredients, and spices and the results would be as good (or maybe even better). —Crafty Fork
Test Kitchen Notes
Before cooking, check whether your corned beef needs rinsing. 10 minutes under running cold water will be enough to remove any excess saltiness from the meat.
To create sublimely tender meat, and also prevent your vegetables from breaking up, avoid boiling them at any time. The water should always be gently simmering enough that there are some sprightly bubbles on the surface (and no more).
The meat and vegetables are traditionally served with a little broth poured over, but you can also serve the broth as a starter, followed by the meat and vegetables. Leftover corned beef makes a delicious sandwich filling. If there are any vegetables left over, lightly mash them together and gently fry in butter until golden-brown. Serve with a fried egg, and you won't be sorry. —Elaine Lemm
- Prep time 30 minutes
- Cook time 4 hours 10 minutes
- Serves 6-8
corned beef brisket (up to 4 lbs), with excess fat trimmed
dry white wine (like Sauvignon Blanc)
chicken stock or broth
cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
large yellow onions, peeled, quartered, and cut into eighths
large white potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1 1/2 inch chunks
large rutabaga, peeled and chopped into 1 1/2-inch chunks
large carrots, peeled and chopped into 1 1/2 inch pieces
large head green cabbage, core removed and cut into eighths
yellow or grainy mustard (optional, as a condiment)
- Place corned beef in the bottom of a large stock pot, and add 1 onion, peppercorns, bay leaves, and garlic. Pour in white wine, and then just enough broth to cover the meat. If you need to add water to cover the meat, that is fine. Simmer, covered, until a fork inserted in the middle glides in easily. This can take up to 3 1/2 hours, but begin checking after 2 1/2 hours.
- When the meat is done cooking, remove to a platter and cover with foil. Add potatoes, rutabaga, carrots, and remaining onion to broth, and bring up to a gentle boil. Reduce to simmer and cook covered until potatoes are still slightly firm, about 20-25 minutes.
- Add cabbage, replace the cover, and simmer until cabbage is tender but still green. Do not overcook the cabbage.
- Remove from heat. Slice meat across the grain when ready to serve. My mom used to cut the meat into large (4-inch) pieces and put back into the broth with the vegetables to serve.