Is there any excuse for corned beef, any day of the year ?
Corned Beef and Cabbage Corned beef and cabbage isn’t actually the national dish of Ireland. You wouldn’t eat it on St. Patrick’s Day in Dublin, nor would you be likely to find it in Cork. So how did Corned Beef and Cabbage become synonymous with the Irish?
During the time of the Irish immigration to the U.S., the first generation of Irish-Americans were in search of the comforting tastes of their homeland. On St. Paddy's Day that meant boiled bacon. But the immigrants were too poor to afford the high price of pork and bacon products. Instead, they turned to the cheapest cut of meat available: beef brisket. Given that New York City was a melting pot for immigrants from around the world, rather than boil the beef, the Irish adopted cooking methods from other cultures. Brining was a technique of the Eastern Europeans, which is a way of salt-curing meat. And the corn? Well, “corned” has nothing to do with corn but instead refers to the corn-sized salt crystals used during the brining process. The corned beef was paired with cabbage, as it was one of the cheapest vegetables available to the Irish immigrants.
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