Sunday, March 17, 2013

7 Days to Homemade Nitrate Free Corned Beef

No nitrates or preservatives....just yummy goodness for St Patrick's day.
This takes 1 week to prepare!

Be aware that with the absence of nitrates (usually in the form of Saltpeter) the meat will NOT be pink like store bought stuff.

3-4 lbs bottom round roast(I prefer this cut, you can use brisket if you like)

Dry Brine:
1/2 cup kosher salt
1 TB cracked peppercorns
1 TB dry mustard seed
1/2 TB coriander seeds
2 bay leaves, crumbled
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp ginger

Mix dry brine together

Place into a gallon size ziplock bag.

With a sharp knife spear the roast at least 20 times per side.

Place speared roast into the bag and seal well. Shake and rub the mixture into the roast very well.

Press out as much air as possible from the bag.

Place the entire bag in a dish. Then place a heavy pan on top of the roast and add weight such as a brick or water bottles or heavy cans.

Place in fridge for 7 days, turning and removing any excess air daily, you will see the moisture being drawn out of the meat and creating its own marinade, do not remove the liquid.

 Day 1

Day 3

Day 5

 Day 7

On the morning of the 7th day(St Patrick's Day in my case) remove from the bag

 Rinse well and set in a pan an cover completely with cold water. Soak for 2-3 hours, changing the water once half way through.(store in fridge between water changes) This is an important step or you will have a VERY salty meal!

Drain well and cook in your favorite recipe.....or here is mine:

Corned Beef(this recipe is good for a 2-4 lb roast)

2 stalks celery, sliced
3 big carrots, sliced
1 medium onion, sliced and separated into rings
6 red potatoes, halved
12 oz Guinness stout
1 TB pickling spice*
water to cover

1 head cabbage, cut into 6 wedges

In the bottom of a slow cooker place the celery, carrots, onion and potatoes.

Place beef on top of the veggies, pour ale over the top and add pickling spice. Add enough water to cover the roast.

Cook on low 6-7 hours.

Increase heat to high, add cabbage on the top and cook 20-30 minutes until the cabbage is tender but still slightly crispy.

 Remove meat and slice, serve with veggies....

*Pickling Spice:
1 TB whole mustard seed
1 TB whole allspice
1/2 TB Peppercorns, coarsely cracked
1 tsp whole cloves
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf, crumbled

Combine all and mix well...I run it through a coffee or spice grinder, just for a few seconds, to break it up slightly.

Serve with grainy mustard or horseradish sauce:
This one is fantastic!!

1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup drained prepared horseradish
dash hot sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Whip cream to soft peaks and then fold in sour cream and horseradish, to taste. Season with salt, pepper and a dash of hot sauce.

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