Corned beef is a type of salt-cured beef product. The name comes from Anglo-Saxon times before refrigeration. In those days, the meat was dry-cured in coarse “corns” of salt. Pellets of salt, some the size of kernels of corn, were rubbed into the beef to keep it from spoiling and to preserve it. Thus the meat was called ‘corned’ beef in reference to the corns of salt.
Today, brining — the use of salt water — has replaced the dry salt cure, but the name “corned beef” is still used, rather than “brined” or “pickled” beef.
In the Philippines, corned beef became a favorite complement to rice most especially during breakfast and also a popular stuffing in making sandwiches.
Corned Beef Recipe
1 kg beef (punta y pecho, tadyang, tapadera, kamto or paypay)
1/2 tablet ascorbic acid (500 mg.)
2 tbsp salt
1/2 tsp vetsin (MSG)
1/4 tsp prague powder
1 tsp sugar
Pressure cooker (in the absence of a pressure cooker, a casserole may be used)
Measuring cup (liquid)
1. Wash meat thoroughly
2. Cut the meat into 1 inch cubes.
3. Mix the salt, vetsin, prague powder, vit. C and sugar
4. Mix the curing ingredients with the cubed meat
5. Place in covered container and cure in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
6. Wash the meat, add water (1/3 of its volume) and cook for 20 minutes. Remove the foam-like formation on the broth.
7. Continue boiling until meat is soft and tender, for faster cooking use a pressure cooker and cook beef for 30 minutes at 10 lbs. pressure.
8. Drain and cool
9. Flake with fork (The flaked meat is ready for consumption). For longer storage period, follow procedures 5,10 to 15
10. Pack meat into bottles/cans and add broth, leave 1/4 inch head space.
11 Exhaust bottles/cans by boiling it with covers slightly closed.
12. Seal thoroughly.
13. Process at 10 lbs. pressure for 10 minutes.
14. Air-cool cans should be cooled under running water while air-cool bottles at room temperature
15. Label and store in a cool place.
The addition of ascorbic acid (vit. C) in cured meat products – meats containing sodium nitrite (preservative) – is to inhibit the formation of carcinogenic nitrosamines during cooking and digestion.
Sources: ITDI (DOST), wikipedia, usda.gov