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Archive for St. Patrick’s Day

TIP OF THE DAY: Corned Beef & Cabbage Sandwich

Sliced Corned Beef

Top: A Corned Beef & Cabbage panini sandwich from Dietz & Watson. Bottom: Sliced corned beef. Photo courtesy Cascal Soda.

 

You may look forward to Corned Beef & Cabbage on St. Patrick’s Day? How about a Corned Beef & Cabbage Sandwich?

If it sounds strange, remember that cole slaw is simply sliced cabbage with dressing, and that the Reuben is a grilled or toasted sandwich on rye or pumpernickel with corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese and Russian Dressing.

In this recipe from Dietz & Watson, they cabbage is simply steamed, but nothing’s stopping you from serving the sandwich with a side of slaw. Or a cold beer.

This photo shows the sandwich made on a panini press, but you can make a conventional sandwich as you prefer.

This sandwich is a relative of
In addition to corned beef hash, this is one of our favorite uses for leftover corned beef.

RECIPE: CORNED BEEF & CABBAGE SANDWICH

Ingredients Per Sandwich

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/2 cup green cabbage, julienned finely
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 slices rye bread or substitute
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon or grainy mustard
  • 6 thin slices corned beef
  • 2 ounces Cheddar Cheese
  • Optional garnish: pickles
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    Preparation  

    1. BRING 1/4 cup of water and 1 tablespoon oil to a boil in a medium pot over high heat. Add the cabbage and reduce the heat to low. Steam the cabbage for 15 minutes but do not overcook; the cabbage should still remain crisp. Drain and pat with paper towels to remove excess moisture. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

    2. LAY two slices of bread on a flat work surface. Spread 1 teaspoon of mustard on each slice. Pile the corned beef, Cheddar and cabbage on one slice. Add the top slice of bread. Grill on a panini press or serve as is.

     

     
    WHAT IS CORNED BEEF?

    Corning refers to curing or pickling the meat in a seasoned brine. The word refers to the “corns” or grains of rock salt (today, kosher salt) that is mixed with water to make the brine.

    Typically, brisket is used to make corned beef; the dish has many regional variations and seasonings. Smoking a corned beef, and adding extra spices, produces pastrami.

    Corned beef was a staple in middle-European Jewish cuisine. Irish immigrants learned about corned beef on New York’s Lower East Side from their Jewish neighbors, and adopted it as a cheaper alternative to Irish bacon. Bacon and cabbage is a popular Irish dish. (Irish bacon is a lean, smoked pork loin similar to Canadian bacon. Here are the different types of bacon.)

    Cattle in Ireland were not used for meat but for dairy products. Pork, an inexpensive meat in Ireland, was a dinner table staple.

    But in the U.S., pork was much more expensive than the American staple meat, beef; and brisket, which required several hours of cooking to tenderize, was an affordable cut. Irish-Americans substituted corned beef for the bacon, and and Corned Beef & Cabbage was born.

     
      

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    RECIPE: Stuffed Cucumber Hors d’Oeuvre

    You don’t need to train as a sushi chef to make these hors d’oeuvre suggested by Sunset Products, growers of Sunset One Sweet Cucumbers. The mini cucumbers easily turn into a crunchy base.

    They’re green enough—and elegant enough—to serve with St. Patrick’s Day cocktails.

    The first recipe is a twist on the traditional California roll.

    RECIPE #1: CUCUMBER, SHRIMP & WASABI BITES

    Ingredients For 48 Bites

  • 8 seedless cucumbers
  • 2-3 teaspoons wasabi paste
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons minced pink pickled ginger (sushi style)
  • 1/2 cup chopped cooked shrimp or crab meat, drained well
  • Garnish: minced fresh chives or tobiko
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    Shrimp & Wasabi Cucumber Appetizers

    Cucumber, Shrimp & Wasabi Bites from Sunset Products.

     
    Preparation

    1. CUT the ends off the cucumbers, then cut each cucumber into 1” slices (6 pieces per cucumber). You should end up with about 48 slices. Using a small melon-baller, scoop out the center of each bite to 3/4 of the way down, leaving the bottom intact. Set aside.

    2. MASH together the wasabi, cream cheese, soy sauce and pickled ginger ith a fork in a small bowl, until smooth and combined. Then mix in the shrimp to thoroughly combine.

    3. TRANSFER the cream cheese mixture to a piping bag (substitute a food storage bag) with a plain round tip. Pipe about 1 teaspoon of the cream cheese mixture into each cucumber bite. Sprinkle with chives or tobiko before serving.

     

    Curried Goat Cheese Appetizer Recipe

    Curried Goat Cheese Bites from Sunset Products.

     

    RECIPE #2: CURRIED GOAT CHEESE, APRICOT & PISTACHIO BITES

    For the holidays, you can garnish these bites with finely minced dried cranberries for a red-and-green theme.

    Ingredients For 48 Bites

  • 8 mini cucumbers
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 5 ounces fresh goat cheese, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped pistachios, lightly toasted
  • 1/4 cup finely minced dried apricots
  • Garnish: chopped pistachios and dried cranberries
  •  
    Preparation

    1. CUT the ends off the cucumbers, then cut each cucumber into 1” slices (6 pieces per cucumber). You should end up with about 48 slices. Using a small melon-baller, scoop out the center of each bite to 3/4 of the way down, leaving the bottom intact. Set aside.

    2. MASH together the cream cheese, goat cheese, curry powder and salt with a fork in a small bowl, until smooth and combined. Then mix in the shrimp to thoroughly combine.

    3. TRANSFER the cream cheese mixture to a piping bag (substitute a food storage bag) with a plain round tip. Pipe about 1 teaspoon of the cream cheese mixture into each cucumber bite. Sprinkle with pistachios and dried cranberries before serving.

      

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Turn Any Soup Into St. Patrick’s Day Soup

    There are plenty of green soups to serve on St. Patrick’s Day. For starters, consider avocado; Caldo Verde (kale, potato, sausage); cream of asparagus, broccoli or spinach; cucumber; green pea; herb; and nettle soups.

    There are also classic Irish soups like Irish Bacon & Cabbage, Potato & Leek and Irish Potato Soup.

    But you can also take your family’s favorite soup and add a green topping, starting with diced avocado.

    Add a sprinkle of freshly chopped green herbs: basil, cilantro, dill, parsley.

    Don’t like avocado? Dice the tops of green onions, or use a chiffonade of basil. If you like, you can toss them on top of a dollop of plain Greek yogurt or sour cream.

    If you’d prefer a cheese garnish, hit a cheese store for Sage Derby, a Cheddar-style cheese from England; or Basiron Pesto, a Gouda turned green with added pesto.

    Now, commence to the eatin’ of the green.
     
    FOOD TRIVIA: WHAT ARE HERBS?

     

    Bean Soup Avocado Garnish

    Instant St. Patrick’s Day food: soup with an avocado and herb garnish. Photo courtesy Quinciple.com.

  • Herbs refer to the leafy green parts of a plant. They can be used fresh or dried.
  • Spices are obtained from other parts of a plant: bark, berries, fruits, roots or seeds. They are usually dried.
  • The word “herb”” is pronounced with the “h” in most English-speaking countries, identical to the man’s name, Herb. In North America, the “h” is dropped, so the word sounds like “erb.”
  • There are culinary herbs and medicinal herbs. Culinary herbs are simply called “herbs,” as distinguished from “medicinal herbs.”
  • The difference between herbs and vegetables in that herbs are used in small amounts to enhance flavor (like spices), rather than used as a substantial ingredient.
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    ST. PATRICK’S DAY: Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

    Green Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

    A St. Pat’s special: green mint chocolate chip cookies. Photo courtesy McCormick.

     

    A tip from McCormick: Use green food color to tint minty chocolate chip cookies for your favorite leprechauns. If you don’t like mint, you can substitute vanilla extract.

    Prep time is 15 minutes, cook time is 10-12 minutes.

    RECIPE: GREEN MINT CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

    Ingredients For 3 Dozen Cookies

  • 2-1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 to 1-1/2 teaspoons green food color
  • 1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
  • 1-1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Preparation

    1. PREHEAT the oven to 375°F. Mix the flour, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Set aside.

    2. BEAT the butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed, until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, food color and peppermint extract; mix well. Gradually beat in the flour mixture on low speed until well mixed. Stir in the chocolate chips.

    3. DROP by heaping tablespoons, about 2 inches apart, onto ungreased baking sheets.

    4. BAKE 10 to 12 minutes or until the cookie edges are lightly browned. Cool on baking sheets for 1 minute. Remove to wire racks; cool completely.
     
    TIP FOR GROWN-UPS

    Add some Crème De Menthe or Irish Cream Liqueur to that chocolate milk!

     
      

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Authentic Irish Beer Styles

    Forget the green beer on St. Patrick’s Day: It’s going to be the cheapest brew on tap. Who would color craft beer green? If you must do so, go for the palest style, Wheat Beer, a.k.a. Weissbier, Weizenbier and Witbier. It takes the color best.

    Instead of the green stuff, consider two beer styles with authentic Irish roots: Dry Stout and Red Ale. American craft brewers from coast to coast make them. In fact, Irish Red Ale is more popular in the U.S. these days than in Ireland!

    Dig in to the two styles below, and check out the other types of beers in our Beer Glossary.

    IRISH-STYLE DRY STOUT

    Stouts are a higher-alcohol version of porter (7% A.B.V.* or higher), a dark beer made from roasted malt or roasted barley, hops, water and yeast.

    All Stouts are Porters, but they are the stronger Porters (the “stoutest” ones). You can review their history and brewing techniques at BeerConnoisseur.com.

    There are different Stout styles, including American Sweet Stout; Baltic Porter; Milk Stout/Sweet Stout/English Sweet Stout, made with lactose, milk sugar; and Imperial Stout/Russian Imperial Stout, a style first brewed in the 18th century for export to the court of Catherine the Great.
     
    *A.B.V. stands for Alcohol By Volume, the percent of alcohol in the beverage.

       

    Dry Irish Stout

    Guinness, the world’s most famous Stout. Annual sales are almost $2 billion. Photo courtesy Romano.

     

    But the most common style of Stout is Dry Stout, the Irish-style Stout represented by Guinness Draught, the world’s best selling Stout. In the early 20th century, when Milk Stout/Sweet Stout became the dominant style in England, Ireland maintained a preference for the non-sweet or Dry Stout, also known as Standard Stout. With the world dominance of Guinness, it is now simply referred to as Stout.

    Irish-style Dry Stouts are black in color with notes of coffee-like roasted barley and a roasted malt aroma. The hop bitterness is medium to medium high. The head is tan or tan-tinged.

     
    DRY STOUT FOOD PAIRINGS

  • Irish pub food: Beef Stew, Corned Beef & Cabbage, Fish & Chips, Guinness Beef Stew, Shepherd’s Pie.
  • Lamb kebabs (marinate them in Guinness) or pot roast with Guinness.
  • Burger or bacon burger, chicken or turkey sandwich, corned beef or Reuben sandwich, grilled cheese.
  • Dessert: anything mad with Guinness (Guinness Chocolate Mousse, Guinness Chocolate Cake or Cupcakes, Guinness Float, Guinness & Rum Milkshake, Spice Cake or Carrot Cake.
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    STOUTS TO LOOK FOR

    Dry stouts made by American craft brewers include:

  • Black Cat Stout from Portsmouth Brewing (Portsmouth, NH)
  • Black Sun Stout from 3 Floyds Brewing Co. (Munster, IN)
  • Blarney Sisters’ Dry Irish Stout from Third Street Aleworks (Santa Rosa, CA)
  • Blue Fin Stout from Shipyard Brewing Co. (Portland, ME)
  • Dark Starr Stout from Starr Hill Brewery (Crozet, VA)
  • Donnybrook Stout from Victory Brewing Co. (Downingtown, PA)
  • Moylan’s Dragoons Dry Irish Stout from Moylan’s Brewery (Novato, CA)
  • Old No. 38 from North Coast Brewing (Fort Bragg, CA)
  • O.V.L. Stout from Russian River Brewing Co. (Santa Rosa, CA)
  •  
    Taste them next to Guinness Draught and any other imported Irish stouts you come across, such as Murphy’s Irish Stout, O’Hara’s Celtic Stout, Porterhouse Brewing Co. Oyster Stout.

    You may also find Guinness Black Lager, a lager style made with stout’s roasted barley, which provides the dark color and fuller body; and Harp Lager, a conventional style.

     

    Irish Red Ale

    Imported from the Emerald Isle: Smithwicks Red Irish Ale, the first modern Irish Red Ale.

     

    IRISH RED ALE

    Traditional0 Irish Red Ales seems to have originated in 1710 at the Smithwick Brewery in Kilkenny. Today, Red Ales are even more popular in the U.S. than in Ireland.

    The reddish or coppery hue is a result of brewing with a percentage of kilned malts and roasted barley. The style focuses on strong malt flavors with a light hoppiness and slight nuttiness/roastiness from the roasted grains.

    Irish Red Ales are usually well balanced, with an average A.B.V. of 3.5% to 5%, although you can find brews with up to 8% alcohol. You may find hints of caramel and toffee from the malt notes, along with a crisp, dry finish.
     
    IRISH RED ALE FOOD PAIRINGS

  • For snacking, put out some smoked or toasted almonds, and mild or fruity cheeses (like fresh goat cheese or Asiago) with walnuts.
  • For a starter, serve a goat cheese salad or a green salad with toasted nuts (a nut oil vinaigrette is a home run).
  • For a main, consider grilled pork, poultry and Irish pub food: Bangers and Mash, mutton and Shepherd’s Pie.
  • Dessert: The caramel and toffee notes of the ale pair well with crème brûlée or plain cheesecake.
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    AMERICAN CRAFT RED ALES TO LOOK FOR

  • Riverbank Red from Ghost River Brewing (Memphis, TN)
  • Erik the Red from Dragonmead Microbrewery (Warren, MI)
  • Irish Red from Boston Beer Co. (Boston, MA)
  • Irish Setter Red from Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. (Akron, OH)
  • Lucky SOB from Flying Dog Brewery (Frederick, MD)
  • Seamus’ Irish Red Ale from Sly Fox Brewing Co. (Phoenixville, PA)
  • Spring Irish Red Ale from Newport Storm Brewery (Newport, RI)
  • Red Trolley Ale from Karl Strauss Brewing Co. (San Diego, CA)
  • Thomas Creek River Falls Red Ale from Thomas Creek Brewery (Greenville, SC)
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    For Irish imports, look for Kilkenny Irish Cream Ale, Murphy’s Irish Red and Smithwick’s Irish Ale. If you want to add another style, pick up some O’Hara’s Irish Wheat, a golden ale.
     
    Thanks to Heather Galanty and the Brewers Association for this material.

      

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