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Friday, March 17, 2017

HIstory of Corned Beef and Cabbage and a Pressure Cooker Recipe

Did you remember to don your green today?? Finally the day that many have waited for the season of green beer, bagels and milkshakes. There are many foods like shamrock shaped cookies or green frosted cupcakes that are not traditional Irish foods but very much associated with St. Patrick's day. The traditional meal for St. Paddy's days is corned beef and cabbage. The dish came about when Irish Americans transformed and reinterpreted a tradition imported from the Emerald Isle.

The first St. Patrick's Day parade took place not in Dublin but in New York City n 1762. During the 1800s Irish immigration to the United States would grow. When the immigrants arrived so did the wave of immigrants brought their own food traditions, including soda bread and Irish stew. Pork was the preferred meat, it was cheap in Ireland and was great on the dinner table. Irish bacon, a lean, smoked pork loin very much like Canadian bacon was a favorite meat. Pork was very expensive in the United States for most and so the immigrants turned to a staple meat in the American diet. From pork and potatoes came corned beef and cabbage. 

Irish immigrants lived beside and among others from European groups such as Jews and Italians The Irish working class in New York City often visited Jewish deli and lunch carts. This is where they tasted corned beef. This was often cured and cooked much like Irish bacon and was tastier and cheaper alternative as well. 

While potatoes were available in the United States, cabbage offered a more cost-effective alternative to cash strapped Irish families. Cooking the spiced salty beef in the same pot as the cabbage offered a simple hearty dish that was easy to prepare. 

Today there are corned beef and cabbage fans across the country. The perfect dish for everyone from housewives to busy cooks on  trains and in cafeterias. The meal is cheap and easy to cook In 1862 Corned beef and potatoes was served at President Lincoln's inauguration dinner. Corned Beef and Cabbage may not be traditional but in the United States is as traditional to St. Patrick's Day as baseball and apple pie are. 

  • 3 pound flat cut corned beef brisket with seasoning packet
  • 4 cups of beef broth
  • 1 large onion, quartered
  • 8 cloves of garlic
  • 6 medium red potatoes, quartered
  • 3 large carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 small cabbage, cut into 6 wedges

Rinse corn beef under cold water Remove excess salt and gel. Put the seasoning packet, beef broth, onion and garlic in to the pressure cooking pot. Put a rack in the pressure cooking pot. Place corned beef on rack. Lock the lid in place. Select High Pressure and set the timer for 90 minutes. When beep sounds, turn off pressure cooker. Use a natural pressure release for 10 minutes, and then do a quick pressure release to release any remaining pressure. When valve drops carefully remove lid. Remove the rack and brisket from the pressure cooking pot. Cover the corned beef with aluminum foil until ready to serve. Add the potatoes, carrots and cabbage to the broth in the pressure cooking pot. Lock the lid in place. Select High Pressure and set the timer for 3 minutes. When beep sounds, turn off pressure cooker and do a quick pressure release to release pressure. When valve drops carefully remove lid. (Check the potatoes and if they’re not tender enough, just select sauté cook them until they’re the desired tenderness.)

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