Even though it’s not St. Patrick’s Day, I can not wait until March to cook one of my favorite meals! To start, brown scones, corned beef cabbage with parsley-mustard sauce, followed by chocolate-stout cake with Guinness ice cream
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
3 tablespoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons baking powder
9 tablespoons unslated butter, chilled and cut into small cubes
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
Preheat the oven to 375 degree Fahrenheit
Place the flours, sugar, and baking powder in a food processor, and process 30 seconds, until well combined.
Add the butter and pulse about 10 times, until the mixture is a coarse meal.
With the machine running, quickly pour in 1 cup of the buttermilk. Stop the machine as soon as the dough comes together. It’s important not to overwork the dough.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and bring it together with your hands into a large ball. Divide the dough into three pieces, and shape each of them into 5-inch-wide disc. Cut each disc into quarters.
Brush the tops of the scones with a little buttermilk. Place on a lightly buttered baking sheet and bake 25 minutes, until the scones are golden brown.
CORNED BEEF AND CABBAGE WITH PARSLEY-MUSTARD SAUCE
One 6-pound corned-beef brisket
4 whole cloves
2 bay leaves, preferably fresh
1/2 bunch thyme
2 chiles de arbol
6 small carrots
9 golf ball-sized turnips
1 1/4 pounds yellow potatoes, peeled
1 medium green cabbage (about 2 pounds)
Parsley-mustard sauce (recipe follows)
*NOTE: timing is important aspect of this meal. While the meat is resting, finish cooking the vegetables. Though you can prep the vegetables in advance, it’s the best to wait and cook them at the last moment.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F
Place the coned beef in a large deep pot and cover with water by 6 inches. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
Cut the onions in half lengthwise, peel them, and poke one clove into each half.
When the water comes to a boil, turn off the heat and add the onions, bay leaves, thyme, and chilies. Cover the pot with plastic wrap (yes, it can go in the oven), aluminum foil, and a tight-fitting lid if you have one.
Cook the corned beef in the oven 4 to 4 1/2 hours, until it’s fork-tender. (Carefully remove the foil and plastic and pierce the meat with a fork. If the fork doesn’t penetrate easily, the corned beef is not ready.)
While the beef is cooking, peel the carrots, leaving 1/2 inch of stem. Cut the carrots in half lengthwise. Trim the turnip tops, leaving 1/2 inch of stem attached. Cut the turnips in half through the stems. Cut the potatoes into 1-inch chunks. Remove any tough outer leaves from the cabbage and slice it in half through the core. Cut each cabbage half into three wedges, leaving the core intact to hold the leaves together.
When it’s done, remove the meat from the oven, let it cool in a few minutes, and transfer it to a baking sheet.
Turn the oven up to 375 degree F.
Return the meat to the oven for about 15 minutes, until it browns and crisps on top. Let the corned beef rest 10 to 15 minutes before slicing it. Meanwhile, skim the fat from the broth. (There probably won’t be very much.) Taste the broth. If it tastes good-not too salty but nicely seasoned and meaty-set half of the liquid aside in a medium saucepan. If the broth is salty, add a little water before setting half of it aside.
Add water to the broth in the large corned-beef cooking pot until you have enough liquid to poach the vegetables. Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn the heat down to medium, and add the potatoes to the pot. Simmer 5 minutes and then add the cabage, turnips, and carrots. (If your pot is not big enough, divide the broth into two pots, adding more water if needed.) Simmer over low heat 15-20 minutes, until the vegetables are very tender. Test each type of vegetable occasionally, and if one is ready before the others, use tongs or a slotted spoon to take the vegetables out of the broth.
Taste the reserved broth and the vegetable-cooking broth. Combine them to your taste. If the vegetable broth tastes best, use it for the finished broth. If the vegetable broth is watery but has good flavor, add a little of it to the reserve broth, to you liking. Or, if you like the meat broth best, use it by itself.
Place the cabbage on a large warm platter. Slice the corned beef against the grain into 1/4-inch thick slices. Arrange the meat over the cabbage. Scatter the other vegetables over and around the platter. Pour over a good quantity of your chosen broth, and drizzle with the parsley-mustard sauce. Pass the extra broth and sauce at the table.
Place the shallots, vinegar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small bowl, and let sit 5 minutes. Pound the parsely with a mortar and pestle and add it to the shallots. Whisk in the mustard and olive oil, and season with a squeeze of lemon juice, a pinch of pepper and a pinch more salt, if you like. Be careful not to over season, since the corned beef may be on the salty side.
CHOCOLATE-STOUT CAKE WITH GUINNESS ICE CREAM
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 cup Guinness stout
1 cup molasses
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3 extra-large eggs
1/2 cup dark-brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon unsalted butter, softened
Guiness ice cream (recipe follows)
Preheat the oven to 350 degree F
Sift the flour, cocoa powder, cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg together into a large mixing bowl.
Pour the beer and molasses into a medium pot, whisk together, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove from the heat, and whisk in the baking soda. Don’t be surprised when it foams up.
In another bowl, whisk together the eggs and both sugars, mixing well to combine. Whisk in the oil, and then the beer mixture.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour in the liquid ingredients, whisking slowly until just incorporated. Be careful not to overmix or the cake will be tough.
Pour batter into a lightly buttered Bundt pan and bake 30 minutes. The cake is done when it begins to pull away from the sides of the pan and the top surface is just starting to crack. When you insert a skewer into the center, it should come out mostly clean. To kepp the cake moist, cover it with a dry kitchen towel as it cools. After 30 minutes, invert the cake onto a platter.
Serve slices of the cake with scoops of the Guinness ice cream.
GUINNESS ICE CREAM
1/2 vanilla bean
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup Guimmess stout
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons molasses
3 extra large egg yolks
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Split the vanilla bean in halt lengthwise. Using a paring knife, scrape the seeds and pulp into a medium saucepan. Add the vanilla pod, milk, and cream, and bring to a boil over medium heat. Turn off the heat, cover and allow the flavors to infuse for 30 minutes.
While the cream is infusing, whisk the beer and molasses together in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, and then turn off the heat.
Whisk the egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla extract together in a bowl. Whisk a few tablespoons of the warm cream mixture into the yolks to temper them. Slowly, add another 1/4 cup or so of the warm cream, whisking continuously. At this point you can add the rest of the cream mixture in a slow, steady stream, whisking continuously. Pour the mixture back into the pot, and return to the stove.
Stir the beer mixture into the cream and cook the custard over medium heat, 6 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently with a rubber spatula and scraping the bottom and sides of the pan. The custard will thicken and when it’s done wil the coat the back of the spatula. Strain the mixture, and chill at least 2 hours in the refrigerator. When the custard is very cold, process it in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.