Saturday, March 13, 2021

The Best St. Patrick's Day Recipes

 St. Patrick's Day is the time to dress in green and put on your yarmulke? That's if you're combining the cuisines of the Emerald Isle and the Promised Land. And you'll feel like you've found that leprechaun pot o' gold at the end of the Western Wall when you try my luscious Jewish recipes using Irish Corned Beef, that's now on sale this week, like the loaded deli classic Corned Beef Sandwich pictured below.

I like traditional Irish Corned Beef and Cabbage and it's easy enough to make, but for the money, I like my Corned Beef between 2 slices of rye and topped with a cabbage Coleslaw, Jewish deli-style. So just keep on reading to see my tasty recipes below for Deli Corned Beef and Homemade Pastrami.

Easy Corned Beef Recipe - VIDEO

If you didn't notice, this week is the time of cheap hunks of Corned Beef -- starting at $1.69 per pound! I usually clear out my freezer for this St. Patrick's Day beef celebration and stock up on a few Corned Beef briskets. They freeze well and I like to smoke them during my patio summer cookouts.

Traditional Irish Corned Beef and Cabbage is easy to make. Boil the whole Corned Beef brisket for about 3 to 4 hours until the meat is tender. Next, remove the corned beef and cook chopped cabbage, carrot and potatoes in the salty broth. I like to dump half the brine/broth as it's very salty and replace it with regular water. When the veggies are tender, return the corned beef to the pot to reheat. That's it, just pile on your plate a thick slice of Corned Beef with tender veggies. Check out my video below.
Easy Homemade Corned Beef with Cabbage - VIDEO

You'll want a batch of Coleslaw to go along with my Homemade Deli-Style Corned Beef Sandwich. Especially when cabbage is selling for pennies a pound this week. Just click here to get a cheap$kate Deli Coleslaw recipe.

Our most famous deli in Los Angeles is Canter's Deli on Fairfax Boulevard. They are especially known for Pastrami and Corned Beef Sandwiches.

For their 60th Anniversary at this location, they served Corned Beef on Rye Sandwiches for 60 cents! If you don't believe me, then just watch the video below as proof positive.
Canter's 60c Corned Beef Sandwich- VIDEO

Last summer I threw a Pastrami Sandwich Party that featured a Rueben and Rachel Sandwich. What takes these sammies over the top is that they are grilled in butter on rye bread grilled with melty Swiss Cheese...soo0 gooood.

Ruben Sandwich is stacked with Pastrami or Corned Beef, Swiss Cheese, Sauerkraut, and Russian Dressing (of course you can substitute with mustard.) Sour to the nth degree, Sauerkraut ignites smokey Pastrami and pungent Swiss Cheese on Rye Bread into an explosive flavor bomb.

Ruben Sandwich- VIDEO

Rachel Sandwich is toasted the same as a Ruben but substitutes Sauerkraut with Coleslaw. Both sandwiches share Russian Dressing, which is easy enough to make -- just a mix of mayo and ketchup.

Rachel Sandwich- VIDEO

And if you have any meaty leftovers then add them to a caloric breakfast scramble of Eggs and Pastrami or Corned Beef (my recipe is a click away here.)

Now, if you really want the wildest use of leftover Pastrami then go no further than the next video, on the making of an Oki Dog.

It is basically a Burrito with hot dogs, cheese, chili, and pastrami. Yes, it's a cholesterolic artery-clogging tortilla-wrapped depth charge that will literally take your breath away. Just watch the video below to see it being assembled (and click here to read its Japanese origin story.)

Oki Dog with Pastrami - VIDEO

In my  Homemade Pastrami Recipe Video link here, I show you how to brine a beef brisket in the refrigerator for a week. But if you buy a package of Corned Beef, you can skip that stage and go right to cooking it like in the video below.

So keep scrolling down to see my Corned Beef and Pastrami recipes (you can also click here to see more Pastrami Recipe photos and text.)

Keep an eye out for that yarmulke-wearing leprechaun with a tzitzit under his green jacket. If you catch him to make sure one of your 3 wishes is one of my delish dishes.

This St. Patty's Day post is all about the beef. So stock up on Corned Beef and get to cooking. You can be sure that the Blarney Chef is not full of it this time - these are some of my best and favorite recipes.

Easy Homemade Deli Pastrami - VIDEO

Play it here. Video runs 2 minutes 42 seconds.

Ingredients for Corned Beef and Cabbage
  • 1 corned beef - I use cheap point-cut corned beef on sale. They usually weigh 3 to 5 pounds. You can follow package directions for cooking corned beef. 
  • 1 whole cabbage - chopped. They have a tough root stem you can remove, but it will tenderize. I only remove if it's discolored brown and extra tough. 
  • 1 carrot chopped - You can add another carrot or two, depending on the size. Sometimes I like more veggies.
  • 2 red potatoes chopped - You can boil red potatoes whole, but they will take an extra half hour to cook. Okay to use white or russet potatoes. Also, add more potato if you like.
  • Water to cover corned beef - When corned beef is cooked, taste broth for saltiness, if too much then replace half the broth with freshwater and taste again.  

Directions for Corned Beef and Cabbage
Corned Beef is a thick and tough piece of meat, so you need to low boil it for about 3 to 4 hours until tender. Time will vary depending on the size of the whole Corned Beef. Mine was about 4 pounds. Cheaper cuts of Corned Beef can be fatty, is so it's okay to trim off some of the fat.

You can follow Corned Beef package cooking directions. Usually, you cover Corned Beef with water, about 5 cups worth. Most times you have a small packet of spices and herb included, so open and empty the contents into the water.

In a large pot, bring the Corned Beef in water to a boil, lower to a low simmer or low boil and cover the pot. Cook about 3 to 4 hours. Check on the pot every hour or so to make sure liquid does not cookout, and add more water if needed. It's okay if the liquid cooks out by half, this will make an intense broth for the veggies.

After about 3 hours you can chop the cabbage, carrot, and potatoes.

When the Corned Beef is done, remove it and set it aside. Taste the broth to see how salty it is. More than likely it's too salty, so pour out half the broth and add an equal amount of fresh water. Now taste to see if the broth is milder. Repeat this step if necessary to reach your desired flavor.

Once the broth meets your tastes, then add the chopped veggies. Bring to a low simmer, cover the pot and cook veggies for about 20 minutes.

If you like crunchy cabbage, then cook carrot and potato first, about 15 minutes, then add chopped cabbage. Cook until cabbage reaches desired crunchiness, usually 10 minutes or so.

Finally, return the cooked Corned Beef to the pot with veggies and let it reheat for about 5 minutes.

This is a one-pot meal, so just slice off hunks of Corned Beef and serve with the cooked veggies.

When slicing the Corned Beef for sandwiches make sure to cut across the grain of the meat. Of course, you'll want to try out a slice to see how yummy it is. Notice the lean meat and its rosy color inside.

For a Deli-style Corned Beef Sandwich just add mustard to rye bread. Layer on your favorite cheese, corned beef and coleslaw. From a 2.67 pound of corned beef brisket, I made 3 sandwiches. I served them to my ex-NYC neighbor Deb and she raved about how delicious it was. I hope you will like it too!

Directions for Cooking Easy Pastrami Recipe
Remove corned beef from the package and follow the cooking directions.

Typically you add corned beef to a large pot with a cover and fill it with water to just above the meat. Bring to a boil, reduce to a low simmer, cover and simmer for at least 3 hours. Check on it from time to time to make sure the water doesn't cook out (the water can cook out by a third, that's okay, as the meat will continue to steam.)

When finished boiling, remove the meat and set it to drain. Make a dry rub to coat the meat for smoking. Mix the pepper and coriander and coat all sides of the brisket.

Dry Rub Ingredients for Smoking
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander - they are the tan brown seeds in the herb package that normally comes with corned beef. You can sometimes find ground coriander in grocery spice racks, too.
  • 2 tablespoons ground black pepper - okay to use less. Sometimes black pepper can overpower everything, but I like my pastrami that way.
  • Wood chips for smoking the pastrami in a BBQ grill -- about 4 cups.

Now time to smoke it. You mainly need an outdoor grill with a cover. I have a 2-burner gas grill. The object is to smoke the meat with indirect heat. That is, place the meat as far away from the flame as possible. The meat is already cooked, so you just want to smoke it at this stage. If you have a simple outdoor charcoal bbq grill then build a fire way off to one side.

The flame is under a pan of wood chips. You could even loosely wrap a large handful of chips in aluminum foil and place over hot coals or a gas flame.

Depending on how large and hot the flame source is, the wood chips should start smoking in a couple of minutes. When the smoke starts, place the boiled brisket as far away from the flame as possible and cover the grill tightly.

Check every 10 minutes or so and replace the wood chips with fresh ones as they cook away if needed. I smoked my pastrami for an hour. Even a half-hour of smoking will give the Corned Beef great flavor and create a crunchy crusted Pastrami.

In the hour of smoking, I had to replace the blackened wood chips a couple of times. The meat will still heat up and brown, even away from the heat.

If you are using a coal burning grill your smoking time may be shorter, as they often burn hotter than a more controllable gas grill (about half an hour of smoking?) The length of time it takes for the wood chips to stop smoking is all the time you really need.

After the pastrami is smoked, place it on a cutting board, slice across the grain, and make a big fat Pastrami Sandwich - your way!

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