Corned Beef

Photograph of corned beef, showing tender pink meat.

Doing your own curing might seem like too much work, but it's not as difficult as one might think, and it provides the opportunity to adjust the spices for your ideal taste.

Corn originally meant grain, referring to the grains of spice and salt that cover the meat. What North Americans call corn (off the cob) got that name because individual kernels look like grains.

The use of curing salt (containing salt peter) is essential. It keeps the meat pink, rather than the brown of over-cooked roast beef, and acts as a preservative to suppress listeria bacteria.

Curing

  1. Mix and rub onto ~2kg Beef Brisket:
    • 100g Salt.
    • 10g Curing Salt #1.
    • 30g Sugar.
    • 3g Molasses.
  2. Mix, sprinkle, and press into meat:
    • 2 Tbs (15g) Peppercorns.
    • 2 Tbs (25g) Mustard Seeds.
    • 2 Tbs (10g) Coriander Seeds.
    • 1 Tbs (5g) Allspice Berries.
    • 1 Tbs (5g) Ground Ginger.
    • 6 (1g) Cloves.
    • 6 (1g) Bay Leaves (crushed).
  3. Vacuum seal in a freezer bag, and refrigerate.
  4. Turn over nightly, for 1 week.

Cooking

  1. Rinse very thoroughly, then dry meat with paper towels.
  2. Vacuum seal in freezer bag.
  3. Sous vide for 30 hours at 165°F.

Resting

  1. Refrigerate bag and juices for 1-3 days.

Heating

  1. In the juice (which will be jellied), gently simmer several thick slices, cut against the grain, along with sliced carrots.
  2. Serve without the juice, which might be too salty.