Video Recipe: St. Patrick’s Day-After Cajun Corned Beef Hash

Mired in a St. Paddy’s Day hangover from too much green beer, Chef Stuart approaches the morning after with as little effort as possible. By using the leftover corned beef and potatoes that were cooked in crawfish boil for his Rouxben (see last episode) he makes a tasty skillet of Cajun Corned Beef Hash.

Irish Blessing: “May you have the hindsight to know where you’ve been, the foresight to know where you are going and the insight to know when you have gone too far”

Food Network’s St. Patrick’s Day Line-up

Food Network's St. Paddy's Day Line-up

In Ireland St. Patrick’s Day is a solemn, religious affair; one of the few days in Ireland where drinking is actually frowned upon and there is no corned beef to be found.  You can learn more about that by reading Corned Beef & Other Irish Myths.

St. Patrick's Day Recipes on Food NetworkSt. Patrick’s Day was first celebrated in the New World in Boston in the year 1737 and it has since spread across the country.  In Chicago they dye the river green.  In New York they have a parade.  New Orleans has a parade as well, Mardi Gras style where the throws of beads and doubloons are replaced with potatoes and cabbages.  But you don’t have to head downtown to enjoy the ‘wearing O’ the green.’

Food Network has a plethora of programs to make you shout erin go bragh!  They also have dozens of great recipes on their site that touch on the tradition of the holiday and celebrate the innovation of 21st Century Irish Cuisine.  They have offerings from Alton Brown, Sunny Anderson, Ina Garten, Tyler Florence and more with recipes like Beer-Battered Broccoli, Spinach-Pesto Ravioli, Irish Grilled Cheese (pictured), Emerald Eggs and Avocado Hummus

The crux of FN’s St. Paddy’s Day programming is to send their resident Ginger, Bobby Flay, back to the home of his ancestors for a culinary tour that is second to none.  Here’s a sneak peak as Bobby visits Ireland’s most famous culinarian, Darina Allen:

Corned Beef & Other Irish Myths

Irish Blessing: “May you be half an hour in Heaven before the Devil knows you’re dead.”

Video Recipe: St. Patrick’s Day Rouxben

St. Patrick’s Day is the one day each year where everyone in America is Irish.  For this St. Paddy’s Day I’m taking the traditional Ruben and Going Coastal.  You won’t believe the flavor of this sandwich and you can’t buy it anywhere.  If you want one, you’ll have to make it.  Here’s how:

Irish Blessing: “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”

Corned Beef & Cabbage and Other Irish Myths

The Irish have been celebrating Saint Patrick’s Day with a giant pot of corned beef and cabbage for centuries. Or have they? If you are Irish-American you may want to sit down before reading on.The dance style made famous by Michael Flatley is not called Riverdancing. Danny Boy is not an Irish song.  They do not drink green beer in Ireland on St. Patrick’s Day.  Corned beef is not a traditional Irish recipe, it’s Jewish.

The Irish recipe that evolved into corned beef and cabbage here in the States was boiled bacon and cabbage. However, when early 20th century Irish immigrants started Jonesing for a taste of the old country they were shocked to find no collar bacon in their new homeland. Collar bacon differs from what we are used to because it contains less salt and has more of the natural flavor of bacon employing the Wiltshire Cure method.

The Irish do not understand the concept of quitting and soon they stumbled on a phenomenon in the neighborhoods of New York called delicatessens.  Within these shops run mostly by Jewish artisans there existed a magical cut of bovine called corned beef, a brine-cured then boiled slab of brisket.

The pungent brine and fat cap resembled the collar bacon enough that New World Irishmen had found a new favorite meal.  It’s relative inexpensiveness was also advantageous for an immigrant community that was treated as a social pariah and therefore blocked from upward mobility and higher paying jobs for over half a century.

To make your corned beef from scratch is time consuming as it must be in the brine for several days.  However, most super markets have corned beef briskets in their meat departments that are perfectly cured and ready for boiling.

The package will tell you how long to boil them, usually 30 minutes per pound.  Simply add chopped cabbage and diced potatoes and carrots during the last half hour of cooking and your corned beef and cabbage are ready.  Serve with Irish soda bread for soaking up the pot liqueur.  I like to rub my brisket with coarse mustard and sear it on all sides before boiling, but that’s just me.

Left over corned beef is perfect for Reubens put please do not put Thousand Island dressing on them – that’s just gross.  Russian Dressing is traditional (if you can find it) or mustard are perfect condiments along with sauerkraut and Swiss cheese.  You can use Darina Alleneither Jewish rye or pumpernickel but only rye breads will do.  You can thank fern bars like Bennigan’s for that whole Thousand Island fiasco.

Once considered a purgatory for foodies, Ireland is now making a bid to supplant France and Italy as Europe’s culinary capital thanks to the likes of talented chefs like Darina Allen.  If you want to be true to your Irish roots collar bacon is now available in the US.  However, if you are going to be true to those roots then you will not drink green beer at a pub but rather go to mass as there is little partying on the Emerald Isle on March 17th.  It is a religious holiday.

And now I will leave you with this traditional Irish blessing:

May those who love us, love us.
And those who don’t love us,
May God turn their hearts;
And if He doesn’t turn their hearts,
May He turn their ankles,
So we will know them by their limping.

Erin go bragh!

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Stuart in 80 Words or Less

Stuart is a celebrity chef, food activist and award-winning food writer. He penned the cookbooks Third Coast Cuisine: Recipes of the Gulf of Mexico, No Sides Needed: 34 Recipes To Simplify Life and Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor." His recipes have been featured in Current, Lagniappe, Southern Tailgater, The Kitchen Hotline and on the Cooking Channel.

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Stuart’s Honors & Awards

2015 1st Place Luck of the Irish Cook-off
2015 4th Place Downtown Cajun Cook-off
2015 2nd Place Fins' Wings & Chili Cook-off
2014 2015 4th Place LA Gumbo Cook-off
2012 Taste Award nominee for best chef (web)
2012 Finalist in the Safeway Next Chef Contest
2011 Taste Award Nominee for Little Grill Big Flavor
2011, 12 Member: Council of Media Tastemakers
2011 Judge: 29th Chef's of the Coast Cook-off
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Wing Cook-off
2011 Cooking Channel Perfect 3 Recipe Finalist
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Gumbo Cook-off
2011 Culinary Hall of Fame Member
2010 Tasty Awards Judge
2010 Judge: Bayou La Batre Gumbo Cook-off
2010 Gourmand World Cookbook Award Nominee
2010 Chef2Chef Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2010 Denay's Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2009 2nd Place Bay Area Food Bank Chef Challenge
2008 Tava: Discovery Contest Runner-up


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