Corned Beef


For many people the idea of boiled meat is completely unappetising.  Particularly if you boil that meat with onion, carrots, potatoes and cabbage.  For those of us with Eastern European heritage it can be quite an acceptable thing to eat for dinner as long as the vegetables (especially the cabbage) haven’t turned to sludge due to excessive cooking. In fact I remember loving the corned beef dinners my dad, Prof, used to make when we were kids, but I realise it just isn’t everyone’s cup of tea.

However, the much maligned corned beef can also be a fabulous option for lunches.

Wal has a physical job and doesn’t have access to shops where he works, so he needs to take a substantial lunch with him every day, and the sprogs, especially the soccer mad son, need something filling enough to get them to the end of a school day.  And they all demand variety.  Vegemite sandwiches every day just won’t do.

So every few months I will do corned beef.  One brisket will make 3 to 4 days worth of lunches and Wal and the sprogs love it.


  • 3-4 kg corned beef brisket
  • 1 t peppercorns
  • 1 t mixed dried herbs
  • 1 star anise
  • 4 bay leaves

Place brisket in heavy based pot, and just cover with water. Add herbs.

Simmer for 3 to 4 hours (needs about an hour per kg). Strain.

Let’s face it, it still isn’t looking super appetising but it does taste good.

Slice finely when ready to make fabulous packed lunches, and remember, if this lunch is going to sit in a wrapper for hours until lunchtime, go easy on the tomatoes!

About baking bohemian

My name is Jen and I am the baking bohemian. My blog identity comes from the cultural background of my mother’s family, (Bohemian), and my mother’s more left wing lifestyle (bohemian). The big ‘B’ Bohemian refers to the rich cultural heritage of our family that emigrated from Bohemia when it was still its own country (it now comprises two thirds of the Czech Republic). Food featured prominently in the family and broader social life of that part of my family. No social interaction was without sustenance, and any celebration, large or small, was an invitation to cook up a storm. My own family emigrated from the United States to Australia when I was a child. For the most part we lived with our mother, and my dad eventually moved back to the US. The little ‘b’ bohemian relates to the semi-alternative lifestyle we led with our mother. I hesitate to refer to her as a hippy, for that conjures up so many misconceptions, but certainly she was on that side of the fence. She was probably more eccentric than radical at the end of the day, but she could really cook. We always set extra plates at the dinner table because inevitably people would visit at dinner time. I started cooking when I was about eight. Cookies. Obviously I was motivated by desire! I loved cooking, I loved that the kitchen was always, in every way, the heart of the house, so I was always part of anything else that was happening while I was cooking. I loved people loving my food. With all the different things that I have done in my life and am interested in, food has remained my most consistent and enduring passion.

One response »

  1. Pingback: Reblog / Link Project: Colltales, Baking Bohemian, LeftWithLouie | ft. // la vie éclectique

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