The Easiest Way To Cook Corned Beef Like A Restaurant

Have you ever looked at a slab of corned beef at the butcher's and thought to yourself: Who in the world named it that, and why? You're not alone! Funnily enough, the name actually has to do with the meat's unique briny characteristics. Corned beef is cured in salt before being cooked and eaten, bestowing it with its trademark salty flavor. According to Food&Wine, the word "corn" is actually in reference to the Germanic word "kurnam." The cut of beef was once cured using large kernels aka "kurnam" of rock salt during the 17th century.

The actual beef in corned beef is made of a tough beef brisket which comes from the breast or chest area of the cow (via Food Network Kitchen). It is known as a distinctly Irish meal, despite the complicated history surrounding the dish, and Irish Americans often make it in honor of Saint Patrick's day, even though the Irish from Ireland rarely do such a thing.

The best way to cook difficult meat

Corned beef is not the easiest meat to cook; it takes time and patience to soften it into a tender meal. One of the best ways to thoroughly roast and soften corned beef is by braising it; this can be done in the oven, on the stove, or even using a slow cooker at low heat. Braising the corned beef will steam it, melting the fat so that it becomes juicy and easy to cut (via Los Angeles Times).

If you plan on using an oven to braise your corned beef, Serious Eats suggests using an old restaurant hack to keep it from drying out. Instead of just sticking the meat open in the oven and hoping for the best, enclose it. Wrap the brisket in tin foil with some water and seasonings or anything else you want to be infused into the meat, then place it all in the oven at a low temperature to steam. In doing so, the meat will be cooked evenly inside and out and soften due to the additional moisture.