September 24, 2005

corned beef and cabbage dinner

Somehow this dish ended up as our traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Got introduced to this kind of corned beef here in the US, already marinated and even comes with a packet of dried herbs and seasoning which includes some coriander seeds. In Manila we're more familiar with the canned corned beef usually imported from Argentina or Brazil. Although I've seen this often featured in magazines like Good Housekeeping and have always wondered about it. So I'm not really sure if this is now available in supermarkets in Manila. I can relate to this dish since it's very similar to our "nilagang baka" (boiled beef shanks) with the same veggies like cabbage, bok choy and potatoes. Carrots are not usually added to the nilaga but adding some adds a little sweetness & interest to the dish. The corned beef is actually a good substitute for the beef shanks, and it's more flavorful. Fresh-squeezed calamansi juice on the side is always good to have, although with this corned beef, which is usually already salty, "patis" or fish sauce is no longer recommended.
Going back to what I was saying earlier, we have declared this dish as our official Thanksgiving dinner menu. It started the first time we spent our Thanksgiving by the beach. We rented a condo unit right on the beach. Around 9 am on that memorable Thanksgiving morning, I took the corned beef out of the fridge and out of the packaging, put it in the slow cooker & covered it with water (as directed in the package) and set it on low to cook until very tender for about 6 to 7 hrs. We then left to go biking almost all day. When we got back in the afternoon, all I had to do was ladle some of the broth from the slow cooker to a separate pot and cook the veggies then it was ready to serve! It was a hassle-free dish and very satisfying.

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