A beef brisket cured in a seasoned brine. Corning is a method of “curing” having nothing to do with corn. In Anglo Saxon times this meant “before refrigeration” the meat was dry cured in “corn salts”, small pellets the size of corn was used and was rubbed into the meat to preserve it. Modern day term is “brining. Salt water is used to “pickle” the beef. Common spices used today for corned beef are peppercorns and bay leaf, and vary by region. There are two cuts of brisket: point cut, most commonly available, often incorporates large quantities of fat, and is tough and stringy when cooked. Flat cut is much leaner, has a better texture (and therefore, better flavor because it is easier to chew) and can be made tender if cooked properly.
Season: available year-round
How to store: Corned beef can be bought cooked and ready to eat and is sold in cans. Uncooked corned beef is bought in sealed pouches in the brine/pickling spices. It will have a sell by date and may be stored for up to 7 days in the fridge after purchase, unopened. An uncooked, drained and well wrapped brisket can be frozen for up to one month. The texture will diminish with storage but will still be good. Once cooked it can be stored for 3-4 days in the fridge or frozen 3-4 months. Corned beef is easy to find in most grocery stores.
How to prepare: braise, simmer
Matches well with: beets, cabbage, carrots, cloves, garlic, horseradish, mustard, nutmeg, onions, parsley, potatoes