Monday, March 28, 2011

Cab Caraway

Feeling like I'd missed the boat on St. Patrick's day, when I saw a small corned beef at my supermarket, on sale no less, I grabbed it and brought it home to prepare. True to tradition, I boiled it for hours (perhaps even a little too long, as it fell apart in shreds rather than carved into nice slices) and served it alongside some steamed yellow fingerling spuds.

I pressed the potatoes with my thumb to half-crush them, a trick I learned from Jamie Oliver; it gives them a little more texture and visual interest than mashing. A little dab of butter, a sprinkling of chopped parsley and they were ready.

You gotta have cabbage with corned beef, right? It's tradition. It's proper. It can be ever so boring. So, I decided to re-think the cabbage part.

First, I had purple, not green, cabbage in the crisper and it needed eating. Second, I thought onions would improve it immensely. So, I hauled out my little pot of bacon fat, sautéed the onions first briefly in that, then added the shredded cabbage - but the stroke of genius came when I was remembering my soda bread from St. Paddy's day and wishing I had some to go along with this meal.

Caraway seeds!

I sprinkled about a tablespoon of those tasty little brown commas throughout the pan of cabbage, ladled just a tablespoon or so of the cooking water from the corned beef into the pan and steam-stirred it until the cabbage changed in color from dark orchid to true amethyst. It still had it's crunch but it was a quieter crunch than before. Man, that was good!

I must admit that the color combo on the plate was perhaps not the prettiest I've ever made but the flavors were happily complementary and that Cab Caraway was "the berries," as my dear Irish father would have said.

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11 Comments:

Blogger cookiecrumb said...

Hi-dee-hi-dee-hi-dee Ho! Very good. :)
Nice solution on the cabbage.

Monday, March 28, 2011  
Blogger namastenancy said...

I've been putting raw sauerkraut into just about everything. I have a cold so the brain cells are blanking on the brand (Farmhouse?). Anyway I put it into my version of Cookie's Cole Slaw and chopped a bit into steamed cabbage. Oh yum1 A little bit tangy and sour with a great crunch from the carrots, celery and fennel. I have to ration myself or I'd eat a jar every other day. It's a bit on the pricey side so that's not good for my cash flow but oh so delicious.

Monday, March 28, 2011  
Blogger namastenancy said...

Oh, and just ain't any Minnie the Moocher, and I'm not a low down hoochie koocher, either.

Monday, March 28, 2011  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Cookiecrumb, I knew you'd get it!

Nancy, I would never describe you as a low down hoochie koocher! Never!

Monday, March 28, 2011  
Blogger cookiecrumb said...

Nancy: Farmhouse is way up there! Good stuff. Flattered you liked my slaw.

Zoomie: I wouldn't mind being a low down hoochi... Oh, wait. I AM.

word verification = "mater" Is this a sign of things to come? Please?

Monday, March 28, 2011  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Cookiecrumb, oh, I do hope so! Not soon enough, but much anticipated.

Monday, March 28, 2011  
Blogger namastenancy said...

Cookie - I guess my post on your blog got lost? It was a riff on my take on your Cole Slaw with an addition of Farmhouse sauerkraut.

Zoomie - forgot to compliment on your clever word play. Cab Caraway. HA!

Monday, March 28, 2011  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Nancy, you sweet talker, you! Merci du compliment!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011  
Blogger cookiecrumb said...

Nancy! Horrors, no, I never saw the post. So sorry.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011  
Blogger Greg said...

Caraway like it! Every day should be St. Pat's day.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Greg, at my house, every day _is_ St. Patrick's Day. It's the bonus of being half Irish.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011  

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