Super simmers


By Jan Bilton

Add a little variety and flavour to family meals with pickled or corned meats. The traditional method of cooking these treats is commonly known as boiling. However, the term is a misnomer. Boiling is spoiling — simmering or poaching is best as this prevents the meat from toughening. 

Generally corned meats are placed in a saucepan of cold water to cover and slowly brought to a simmer. Placing the meat directly into boiling water causes the meat to shrink. Seasonings such as sugar, spices, herbs plus flavoursome vegetables — for example, fennel, onion and parsnip — can be added.


New York-style corned beef
New York-style beef on Rye

1.5kg corned beef eg silverside or brisket

1 onion studded with cloves

2 bay leaves

2 tablespoons each: cider vinegar, prepared mustard

1/3 cup maple syrup

1 teaspoon cornflour

4 thick slices dark rye bread

1/4 cup mayonnaise

3 cups thinly sliced cabbage

Place the corned beef in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Add the onion and bay leaves. Slowly bring to the boil. Cover and simmer/poach gently for 45 minutes per 500g. If preferred, add carrots and/or potatoes 30 minutes before the end of cooking.

Combine the vinegar, mustard, maple syrup and cornflour in a saucepan and simmer, stirring, for 5 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 190°C. Place the silverside in a baking pan. Baste the meat with the vinegar mixture. Bake for about 10 minutes, basting often.

Spread the rye bread with mayonnaise, top with the cabbage and slices of the corned beef.

(The leftover meat will provide another 4 servings.) Makes 4 open rye sandwiches.

  • Jan Bilton is a Cambridge-based, professional food writer. For more of her recipes see her website here.

One thought on “Super simmers

  • August 19, 2020 at 1:34 pm

    Best way to cook silverside is in your slow cooker. Melts in your mouth. I never used to like silverside now it is a favourite with me.


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