How to cook corned beef
What you need to know
Best cuts for slow-cooking corned beef
- Corned brisket
- Corned silverside
- Corned girello /eye of silverside
Five easy steps to divine corned beef
Step 1 Rinse beef in cold water to remove surface brine. Place into a heavy-based pot and cover with cold water.
Step 2 Bring pot to boil, remove grey foam that rises to the surface, then reduce heat to a low simmer.
Step 3 Add aromatics such as a bay leaf, brown sugar, onion and cloves. Then add chunks of carrot, celery and onion to flavour the beef delicately.
Step 4 Adjust heat and maintain a simmer so small bubbles occasionally rise to the surface throughout the cooking time. Allow 25–30 minutes for each 500 g of beef.
Step 5 A fork should easily penetrate the centre of the meat when ready. Once cooked, remove pot from heat and leave beef to rest in the cooling liquid.
- Most supermarkets sell corned beef with brining liquid in vacuum-sealed bags. Rinsing your cut before cooking avoids an overly salty taste.
- You can also draw out excess salt by soaking corned beef in a bowl of cold water overnight.
- Keep the cooking temperature at simmering point. Boiling makes it dry and stringy, and you don't want that!
- To serve corned beef cold, cook as per easy steps above. Once steam from the liquid evaporates, place beef on a plate, cover with foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate immediately. Don't cool it completely on the kitchen bench.
How to carve corned beef
- Place beef fat side up on the carving board, with the tip to the right of the carver.
- Begin at the tip, slicing across the grain.
- As the grain changes, turn beef so that you're always cutting across the grain for maximum tenderness.