After all these years, I've finally learned the trick to a gorgeous rich mahogany lacquered, meltingly tender, pepper crusted corned beef. Proving once again, that old dogs can learn new tricks. Thank you Martha Stewart!
- 3 pound flat cut corned beef brisket
- Black pepper - a couple of tablespoons freshly ground
- One medium cabbage
- Olive oil
- Sea salt
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Open the package of brisket in your sink, dry the thick packaging liquid by blotting it with paper towels and place the meat in your roasting pan, fat side up. Crust the fat with 2 tablespoons of freshly ground black pepper and the spice packet, if yours is separate.
Cover the dish with foil and cook for 3 hours. Remove the foil. If there is more than one inch of liquid in your roasting pan, pour off all but a half inch of this liquid before baking without the foil for an additional 30 minutes. This is when the magic happens and the outside turns dark reddish and it becomes super tender.
While corned beef is roasting, prep the cabbage by cutting into 8 wedges or one inch 'steaks'. Arrange on a sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper then place into the oven with the corned beef - the cabbage will need to cook until tender and slightly charred at the edges, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Check the brisket by inserting a fork in the meat. If it goes in super easy and you are able to pull apart or shred the meat with a twist of the fork, itís ready. If it meets with any resistance or seems firm, cook for another 30 minutes. You may have to keep checking it and putting it back in the oven once or twice depending on the size of your corned beef.
If your corned beef is tough, it has not cooked long enough. A corn beef brisket needs a long slow cooking time so the connective tissues will melt. Once tender, remove from the oven and let it rest, covered with the foil. Keep cooking the cabbage until soft and also fork tender. Serve in slices with the cabbage and some grainy mustard or horseradish on the side.