I meant to post on this sooner, but hadn't gotten around to it.
Our first year here, Daniel and I really wanted corned beef for Saint Patrick's day. However, we are unable to buy it here. So, last year we decided to corn our own beef. It worked well! We used a recipe, but didn't follow it exactly. This year, we corned some more beef, this time to use in reuben sandwiches. Here's how we corned the beef:
We bought about 3 1/2 pounds of a beef roast and cut it into large chunks. Then, we put the raw meat cuts into a large, ziplock bag and rubbed them well with about 1/2 Cup (or a little more) of non-iodized salt. We added a few tablespoons brown suger, some black pepper corns, allspice, thyme, sage, paprika, a few bay leaves, a chopped onion, chopped carrot, and a chopped celery. We put the bag of meat in the fridge with something heavy on top (so the juice runs freely). Then, every day for the first few days, we would massage the bag to make sure all the meat gets cured. After 2-3 weeks, (we waited 3), we took out the meat and put it in fresh cold water to rinse out the salt. We did this a few times (using new water), so we could rinse away as much salt as possible. Then, we cooked the meat in water with more onions, carrots, celery, bay leaves, and some garlic. It cooked for a few hours. If you want a corned beef meal, you can also throw in some potatoes and cabbage, and lots of peppercorn (while cooking), and eat it as is, but we took the beef and made reuben sandwiches using rye bread (we had bought from the north shore and frozen), saurkraut, home-made thousand island dressing, and white cheese (alas, we could not find swiss, but we will try again next time- which happens to be tonight). We decided to make open face sandwiches. Some time we will try to make our own saurkraut, because we also had to buy it at the north shore (not a lot of options in Jarabacoa). We froze the leftover beef to use for future meals (some of which we will be eating tonight).
So then, for the pics:
Cooking the beef