Preparing a classic Irish meal of corned beef and cabbage in a slow cooker is a fantastic way to ensure tender, flavorful results. This slow-cooker recipe is straightforward to prep in the morning, ensuring a perfect meal by dinnertime. But what’s the secret to making corned beef tender in a slow cooker?
The key ingredient for this dish is cured brisket, which can be obtained from a local butcher. Enhance the flavor with red pepper flakes and whole cloves to add the right amount of spice and aroma. Remember to let the corned beef rest for at least 15 minutes after slow cooking and then slice it against the grain for the best texture.
Cooking corned beef in a slow cooker involves adding onions, carrots, potatoes, and garlic to the base, followed by the corned beef and seasoning packet. The trick is to add just enough water to cover the base of the meat. Cooking on low heat for about 8 hours is crucial, as overcooking can cause the meat to fall apart, though it remains delicious. For a more tender, fall-apart texture, simply extend the cooking time slightly.
Various recipes suggest adding cabbage either at the start or in the last couple of hours of cooking. Transferring the corned beef into a 6- to 8-quart slow cooker with the fat cap facing up, adding wine and spices, and then cooking on high for 4 hours before reducing to low is another method to achieve tender results. Basting the beef with the cooking liquid and adding potatoes and carrots to the liquid surrounding the beef ensures all elements of the dish are flavorful and tender.
With these tips and techniques, you’ll be able to prepare a delectable slow-cooker corned beef that is juicy, tender, and perfect for a comforting meal.