Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Corned Beef And Cabbage


2015-03-16 16.55.11

My recipe for corned beef and cabbage is so easy. Once you look over how easy it is, I believe you won’t have to go out, to enjoy this dish anymore. When I make this dish for St. Patrick’s Day, it fills my house with the smells and memories of growing up and knowing Spring was just around the corner. I start the corned beef with a brisket cut of meat. Because it’s just Steve and I, I only bought a piece that was about 2-1/4 pounds.
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In a large Dutch oven type pot, I set the brisket in first. Next for the liquids, I used 1 quart each, of low sodium chicken broth and beef broth. The mixture of the two broths were the perfect flavor. Make sure that the meat is completely covered in liquid. Now for the spices, I used a pickling spice blend. They are ready available in grocery stores now. After adding in my pickling spice blend to the pot, I brought it up to a boil, then reduced it to a simmer. Place the lid on the pot and I let this simmer on a med low heat for 2-1/2- 3 hours until the corned beef was fork tender and ready to slice. I do want the meat to hold it’s integrity when I slice it.

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Now, about an hour into the cooking of the corn beef, I start working on the cabbage, potatoes, and carrots on another burner.

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I have 7 med size Yukon gold potatoes that I’ve peeled.

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I’ve quartered the potatoes and threw them into another large pot, where I’ve covered them with cold water. I brought the potatoes up to a boil, sprinkled a little Kosher salt over the potatoes to season them.  Now I’m only par boiling the potatoes. I don’t want to cook them all the way because, I’m going to add them in with the cabbage. So once the potatoes have just started to soften, I’d say about 5 minutes in the boiling water, I drain the potatoes really well then I take them out and place them into a bowl, like you see here above.

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I’m going to use the same pot that I drained the potatoes out to cook my cabbage in. I have some low sodium chicken broth, and two small heads of cabbage that I’ve cored and quartered. I place all the quarters into the pot and cover them with the chicken broth. I turn the heat up to med high and bring the cabbage up to a boil. After it has come to a boil, I reduce the heat to around med heat so the cabbage simmers nicely but doesn’t come to a hard boil. This is the time where I want to season the cooking liquid that the cabbage is cooking in. I add in my  Kosher salt and black pepper at this point. While the cabbage is simmering, I’m getting my carrots ready.  I’ve peeled 5 med size carrots that I’ve cut into 2 inch pieces that I’m going to toss in with the cabbage later.The cabbage has been simmering now for about 20 minutes, now, this is the time I add the potatoes back in.

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I let the cabbage and potatoes simmer together for 10 minutes.  I want to mention that, after cooking the cabbage and potatoes, the liquid may have reduced a bit. That’s to be expected. What I like to do is to add 2 extra cups of very hot water to the pot, to maintain the temperature of everything, and to bring the liquid back up before adding in the carrots. You want to make sure there is plenty of liquid in the pot so the carrots will cook through.

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Finally, now that all the veggies are in the pot, bring it all up to a simmer again and let them cook for another 20 minutes. After the 20 minutes is up, stick a fork into one of the pieces of carrots. They should be just starting to soften. You don’t want them to be mushy. I turn the heat off and place a lid on the pot. Whatever cooking time is needed to finish the carrots will happen in the hot pot. This will keep everything hot until it’s time to slice the corned beef.

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It’s now been 2-1/2 hours that the meat has been cooking. This is the time where you want to check to see if the meat maybe needs another half an hour more. If not, take the corned beef out and set it on a place to rest for about 15 minutes, covered with foil. Remember, I really want corned beef to be fork tender but also for it to keep it’s integrity when sliced.  Now depending on how long the difference in time is to when the cabbage and potatoes were done cooking and the corned beef was ready to be sliced, make sure the veggies are still nice and hot. If you think they could be hotter. while the corned beef is resting, turn the burner on med low to heat the cabbage, potatoes, and carrots. This will ensure that when you place the sliced meat on the plate along side the hot veggies, you can ladle some of that delicious broth the the veggies have been steeping in on top of the corned beef. YUM!

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Yields: 2- 4 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 2-1/2- 3 hours
Ingredients:
2- 1/4 pound brisket
1 tablespoon of pickling spice
2 small heads of green cabbage, quartered
7 med size Yukon gold potatoes, quartered
5 med size peeled carrots cut into 2 inch pieces
1 quart of low sodium beef broth ( for the meat)
1 quart of low sodium chicken broth ( for the meat)
2 quarts of low sodium chicken broth ( for the veggies)
2 cups of hot water
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt ( 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt in the water the potatoes are par boiled in)
1 teaspoon of black pepper
Directions:
Place the room temperature brisket in the bottom of a large Dutch oven. Next add the pickling spice and the 2 mixed quarts of broth. The meat should be totally submerged. Bring it up to a boil, reduce to a simmer. Place the tight fitting lid on and let cook on med heat for 2-1/2- 3 hours. After 2 1/2 hours check on the corned beef to see if it is ready, if not continue cooking for another 1/2 an hour. You want the meat to be tender, but when you slice it, it holds its integrity, and not break up into tiny little shreds. Now about an hour into the cooking of the corned beef is when I like to start the vegetables. I par boil the potatoes in salted water, for 5 minutes first first. While that’s happening, I quarter the cabbage up. Place the cabbage in the same pot the potatoes par boiled in. Fill the pot up with the low sodium chicken broth and bring the cabbage up to a boil then reduce it to a simmer on med heat, let that cook for 20 minutes. Next add the potatoes in and continue cooking for another 10 minutes before add in the carrots. You will see that the liquid has somewhat evaporated, so this is when you want to add 2 cups of very hot water to the pot before adding in the cut carrots. This ensures there is enough liquid for the carrots to cook. Continue cooking all the veggies together for another 20 minutes. Turn the heat off and place the lid on. This will help the carrots to finish their cooking without being mushy. Once you’ve taken the meat out of the pot, ( if there are any large spices clinging to the meat, just brush them off) place the meat on a plate covered with foil and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing. Check on the cabbage, potatoes, and carrots, while the meat is resting, to make sure they are still hot before plating. If they need to be heated up, this can be done while the meat is resting.

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Eton Mess By Way Of Italy


2015-03-26 13.13.04

Eton Mess is traditionally an English dessert with fresh strawberries, whipped cream, and pieces of meringue. Now that’s sounds absolutely delicious, but I wanted to put an Italian flare to this dessert. I think it’s going to be a huge hit tonight for dessert, at the dinner I’m hosting for my friends. So I really need to get back to work on the rest of the meal. Not to worry I’ll be posting this recipe very soon.

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Lemon Ricotta Cream Filled Shortbread Cookies


2015-03-18 20.11.25

I love #shortbread cookies, but filled with a lemon Ricotta cream, that’s just taking them to the next level of awesome. One bite into these delicious cookies and you’ll #tastethelove.  This recipe is so easy that it’s no problem to whip them up whenever you want. I like to start out by making the filling. This way it’s really cold by the time the cookies have cooled and are ready to be filled.  All it takes is whole milk Ricotta, confectioner’s sugar, better known as powdered sugar, and lemon zest. Mix this all together in a bowl.  After it’s mixed really well. cover and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes. Now here’s how to make the dough for the shortbread.

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Using a mixer fitted with the paddle, cream the room temperature butter, vanilla extract, and sugar together. Sift the flour and corn starch together into a large bowl. With a whisk, whisk the flour and corn starch together until they are well combined. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the creamed butter. once the dough  comes together, turn the mixer off. If the dough seems too dry add in 1 more tablespoon of soften butter, but only if needed. Form the dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes. Flour your surface are and roll the dough out and cut into rounds. Place them on lined baking sheets using parchment paper, and bake. Due to the size of my oven, I bake them off in batches. I just refrigerate the other trays until they’re ready to go into the oven. Let completely cool before filling them with the lemon Ricotta cream.

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Yields: 32- cookies
Inactive Prep Time: 20-30 minutes
Prep Time: 15 minutes (for rolling out the dough and cutting out the cookies)
Cook Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:
2 sticks of soften unsalted butter, (plus 1 tablespoon if needed)
1 cup of sugar
1 tablespoon of pure vanilla extract
2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 scant cup of corn starch (scant= almost 1 cup)
1-15 ounce container of whole milk Ricotta cheese
8 ounces or 1/2 a pound of powdered sugar
zest of a lemon

Special equipment:  a sifter, and a 3 or 4 inch fluted cookie cutter
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line your baking sheets with parchment paper
Directions:
Make the lemon Ricotta filling.. While making the filling, cream the butter, vanilla extract, and sugar together. After the filling is well mixed refrigerate. Next add the sifted dry ingredients to the mixer slowly. Once the dough has come together, and it’s not too dry where you don’t need to add that extra butter, dump it out onto a floured surface. Form into a round disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes along with the filling. Roll the dough out onto a lightly floured surface about 1/4 inch thick, using the fluted cookie cutter. Place them onto the lined baking sheets. After the cookies have baked for 25 minutes, and cooled completely, take a generous spoonful of the filling and place in on the underside of the cookie and place the other one capturing the filling in the middle. You want the tops side of the cookies to be on the top and bottom of the cookie sandwich.

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Easter Is Upon Us!


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I’m having my friends the Theodore’s, Cheri and Scott over for dinner. They are such dear friends, and are moving soon, so I thought it would be great to have them over for a nice dinner together with an Easter theme. They have two children, Story and Jake, so I wanted the atmosphere to be kid friendly too. I thought the table centerpiece should “SCREAM” sweetness, there should always be a basket of colorful Easter eggs waiting in the wings, and the outdoors should say, “Spring time is here”. The menu will feature #Spring vegetables and a very berry dessert.

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