Author Notes: This California twist on the corned beef and cabbage feast is untraditional in all the right places -- and almost as easy as the old school dump-in-the-crock pot approach, with a few brilliant tweaks. Goin divorces the vegetables from the meat so they're free to cook in their own time. In an exciting twist, she also throws the beef in the oven to brown and crisp up a bit at the end. Finally, she gives it just what any salty, long-cooked broth craves: a sauce that vibrates with life. Recipe adapted very slightly from Sunday Suppers at Lucques by Suzanne Goin with Teri Gelber (Knopf, 2005) —Genius Recipes
Serves 6, with leftovers
For the Corned Beef and Vegetables
- 1 6-pound corned-beef brisket
- 2 onions
- 4 whole cloves
- 2 bay leaves, preferably fresh
- 1/2 bunch thyme
- 2 chiles de arbol
- 6 small carrots
- 9 golf ball-sized turnips
- 1 1/4 pounds yellow potatoes, peeled
- 1 medium green cabbage (about 2 pounds)
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Place the corned beef in a large deep pot and cover with cold water by 6 inches. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
- Cut the onions in half lengthwise, peel them, and poke one clove into each half.
- When the water comes to a boil, turn off the heat and add the onions, bay leaves, thyme, and chiles. Cover the pot with aluminum foil and a tight-fitting lid.
- Cook the corned beef in the oven 4 to 4 1/2 hours, until it's fork-tender. (Carefully remove the foil and pierce the meat with a fork. If the fork doesn't penetrate easily, the corned beef is not ready.)
- While the beef is cooking, peel the carrots, leaving 1/2 inch of stem. Cut the carrots in half lengthwise. Trim the turnip tops, leaving 1/2 inch of stem attached. Cut the turnips in half through the stems. Cut the potatoes into 1- inch chunks. Remove any tough outer leaves from the cabbage and slice it in half through the core. Cut each cabbage half into three wedges, leaving the core intact to hold the leaves together.
- When it's done, remove the meat from the oven, let it cool a few minutes, and transfer it to a baking sheet.
- Turn the oven up to 375 degrees F.
- Return the meat to the oven for about 15 minutes, until it browns and crisps on top. If it's not browning to your liking, you can pass it under the broiler. Let the corned beef rest 10 to 15 minutes before slicing it.
- Meanwhile, skim the fat from the broth. (There probably won't be very much.) Taste the broth. If it tastes good -- not too salty but nicely seasoned and meaty -- set half of the liquid aside in a medium saucepan. If the broth is salty, add a little water before setting half of it aside.
- Add water to the broth in the large corned-beef cooking pot until you have enough liquid to poach the vegetables. Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn the heat down to medium, and add the potatoes to the pot. Simmer 5 minutes and then add the cabbage, turnips, and carrots. (If your pot is not big enough, divide the broth into two pots, adding more water if needed.) Simmer over low heat 15 to 20 minutes, until the vegetables are very tender. Test each type of vegetable occasionally, and if one is ready before the others, use tongs or a slotted spoon to take the vegetables out of the broth.
- Taste the reserved broth and the vegetable-cooking broth. Combine them to your taste. If the vegetable broth tastes best, use it for the finished broth. If the vegetable broth is watery but has good flavor, add a little of it to the reserved broth, to your liking. Or, if you like the meat broth best, use it by itself.
- Place the cabbage on a large warm platter. Slice the corned beef against the grain into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange the meat over the cabbage. Scatter the other vegetables over and around the platter. Pour over a good quantity of your chosen broth, and drizzle with the parsley-mustard sauce. Pass the extra broth and sauce at the table.
For the Parsley-Mustard Sauce
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons finely diced shallots
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 3/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 lemon, for juicing
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Place the shallots, vinegar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small bowl, and let sit 5 minutes. Pound the parsley with a mortar and pestle and add it to the shallots. Whisk in the mustard and olive oil, and season with a squeeze of lemon juice, a pinch of pepper and a pinch more salt, if you like. Be careful not to overseason, since the corned beef may be on the salty side.
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