St. Patrick’s Day is coming up and with it, for many people, comes the craving for corned beef and cabbage, even if they are not Irish. While some restaurants serve the dish year round, it is most popular at this time of year.
Like many other ethnic dishes eaten in the United States, the traditionally Irish fare of corned beef and cabbage did not come from Ireland, but was created in America. A little Internet research came up with the meal’s background.
While Ireland was a major exporter of corned beef a few centuries ago, the meat was too expensive for most Irishmen to buy themselves. Later on, Irish immigrants in New York discovered that beef here was cheaper than pork, which had been their staple meat back home. So corned beef replaced boiled bacon and was paired with cabbage (which was cheaper than potatoes here too) to become an inexpensive and easy to fix meal for many Irish-Americans.
The term “corned,” by the way, refers to the process of preserving the meat with kernels of salt.
To satisfy that craving for corned beef, local residents have a variety of places they can visit. Two area restaurants serve a corned beef and cabbage dinner year round.
The menu at Magee’s Tavern lists “Traditional Irish Fayre” including Corned Beef and Cabbage which is slow-roasted corned beef served with boiled potatoes, cabbage, carrots, and topped with Irish whiskey cream sauce.
If you don’t care for cabbage, the tavern’s menu also includes Corned Beef Tacos, which are served with either a cup of soup or a side salad, and Corned Beef Mac ‘n Cheese served with fresh, saut