Corned beef brisket with mustard and pickles

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Something of a retro classic, corned beef is a form of salt cured beef and takes its name from the large grains of salt – known as ‘corns’ – used in the curing process. A far cry from the dubious tinned varieties, homemade corned beef is in a class of its own in terms of texture and taste. Shay Cooper’s corned beef recipe is finished with crunchy pickles and smothered in distinctively nutty Pommery mustard.

First published in 2015





Braising liquor

Corned beef

To serve


  • Mincer
  • Terrine mould


Begin by preparing the brine for the beef. Combine all of the ingredients in a large pan and bring to the boil. Once boiling remove from the heat and allow to cool, then submerge the brisket and leave to brine in the fridge for seven days
Combine the carrot, onion, celery, leek and garlic with the water and herbs in a large pan. Bring to the boil then turn down to a simmer. Add the brined beef to the pan and cook for 3-4 hours until tender. Remove the pan from the heat and leave the beef to cool in the braising liquor
Once the beef has cooled dice it and run it through a meat mincer on a coarse setting along with the pork fat and pork belly. Place the minced meats into a large mixing bowl and thoroughly combine, then add the capers, cornichon, onion, mustard, pepper and fish sauce and mix well
Adjust the seasoning if necessary, then place the corned beef mixture into a terrine mould or metal frame lined with cling film. Cover the top of the corned beef with more cling film, press with a weight and leave to set in the fridge overnight
Remove the corned beef from the fridge and lift it out of the mould. Using a sharp knife cut the corned beef into even slices and neatly brush the presentation face of the beef with the wholegrain mustard. Evenly sprinkle the mustard seeds and chopped chives over the top and serve immediately with fennel fronds, caper berries, cornichons and sliced gherkin

One of England’s up-and-coming, ultra-talented chefs with Michelin pedigree, Shay Cooper started cooking as a commis chef in 1997, before he was even out of school.

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