If you give a mouse cooked cabbage, it’s going to want some corned beef with it…

This morning I posted my sweet and sour red cabbage recipe onto my recipe pages and I figured I’d stop for the day. Then I got ansty and started to feel like the mouse from Laura Numeroff’s wonderful children’s book  If You Give a Mouse a Cookie (and if you have young kids and have never read it to them, I highly recommend it), desperately needing to then post my Corned Beef recipe. Because, really, the two are an edible marriage made in heaven. So, with apologies to Laura Numeroff, “If you give your readers a recipe for sweet and sour red cabbage, they’re going to want some corned beef to go with it.”

This is another recipe from my late mother-in-law. I buy the pickled brisket (I don’t pickle it myself) and I always try to get a large piece, because it feeds a lot of people and leftover corned beef is wonderful on sandwiches or just on a plate! I also love making this for Shabbat as it doesn’t need to be served hot, and that’s a plus. It also freezes really well after it’s sliced.


Slicing the corned beef very thinly


2-3 kg (4.5-6.5 lb) piece of pickled brisket

2 stalks of celery

2 medium onions roughly sliced

3 bay leaves

1 small stalk of fresh rosemary or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary

2 whole cloves of garlic

Cold water

1/3 cup ketchup

2 tablespoons oil

1 tablespoon grainy Dijon mustard

3 tablespoons vinegar

1/3 cup brown sugar

How to make it

1. In a very large pot, place the beef, onions, celery, bay leaves, garlic and rosemary.

2. Cover with cold water and bring to the boil.

3. Turn down the flame and simmer slowly for 4 hours.

4. Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC (350ºF).

5. Mix the ketchup, oil, mustard, vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan, and bring to the boil while stirring. Turn off the flame once it’s boiled.

6. Transfer the beef into a roasting pan that you have sprayed with non-stick spray, and evenly pour the sauce over the top of the beef. Tip: The sauce sticks to the bottom of the pan, so I recommend using a disposable aluminium container to bake the beef in.

7. Bake for about 25 minutes or until the sauce starts browning.

8. Cool and slice with an electric knife.

Serve at room temperature, and prepare my sweet and sour red cabbage as a side dish!


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