Corned Pork and Brown-Butter Creamed Collard Greens

It’s coming up on St. Patrick’s Day and I decided I wanted to try something different instead of the traditional Corned Beef and Cabbage (which, as we all know, isn’t Irish in the first place). This recipe is a combination of a beer brined corned beef recipe from The Beeroness with a more traditional recipe from Simply Recipes. Instead of using stout, I decided to use a bottle from last year’s run of the Fatali Four from Upright Brewing – a Belgian ale with fatali chiles – to add a little heat. Instead of using ground ginger, I used some New Deal Ginger Liquor – which in retrospect, I wish I had left out since it overpowered everything. I also went a little crazy on the exotic peppers (grains of paradiselong pepper and Sichuan peppercorns) that I had recently picked up at The Meadow. The Brown-Butter Creamed Collard Greens seemed like a good alternative for the cabbage. I only strayed from that recipe by cooking the bacon whole, then dicing it up…

Corned Pork

Pickling spices:
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp whole allspice berries
1 tsp whole brown mustard seeds
1 tsp whole cloves
½ tsp grains of paradise
½ tsp long pepper
½ tsp Sichuan peppercorns
½ tsp whole black peppercorns
3 whole cardamom pods
3 large bay leaves, crumbled

6 cups water
1 750 ml bottle of Fatali Four
½ cup brown sugar
5 teaspoons pink curing salt
2 Tbsp New Deal Ginger Liquor
¼ stick cinnamon (roughly ¾ of an inch)
pickling spices (see above)

1 ≈2½ pound pork brisket with skin removed

Toast the coriander seeds, allspice berries, brown mustard seeds, cloves, grains of paradise, long pepper, Sichaun peppercorns, black peppercorns and cardamom pods in a small frying pan on high heat until fragrant and when you hear the mustard seeds start to pop. Remove from heat and place in a small bowl. Use a mortar and pestle to crush the spices a little. Add to a small bowl and stir in the crumbled bay leaves.

Fill in a large pot with 6 cups of water and pour in the bottle of Fatali Four. mix in the pink salt and brown sugar, plus the ginger liquor. Then add the pickling spices and the quarter stick of cinnamon. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat and let cool to room temperature. Then refrigerate until well chilled.

Place the brisket in a large, flat container or pan, and cover with the brine. The brine should cover the meat. The meat may float in which case you may want to weigh it down with a plate. Alternatively you can use a gallon freezer bag (placed in a container so if it leaks it doesn’t leak all over your refrigerator), place the brisket in the freezer bag, squeezing out the air from the bag before sealing. Place in the refrigerator and chill from 5-7 days. Every day flip the brisket over, so that all sides get brined equally.

Pre-heat the oven to 350°. Then, rinse the meat and brush off any seasoning that may be stuck to the meat. Wrap tightly in tinfoil and place on the rack of a roasting pan with the fat side facing up. Cook one hour for every pound. Remove foil the last hour and drain any liquids that have accumulated in the pan before placing back on the rack of a roasting pan. Be sure that the fat side is still facing up, so that the outer layer will caramelize and get crispy. Let rest for 5 minutes, then slice against the grain.

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To go with the meal, I decided to go with another Upright bottle I’ve been sitting on for three years: Late Harvest (Batch 3+).