Traditional Bacon and Cabbage

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In rural Ireland, beef was too expensive; the Irish ate mostly pork instead. Bacon and cabbage is a much more traditional dish than corned beef and cabbage. Irish “Bacon” is radically different than American bacon. Unless you go to the trouble to obtain the real thing from The Oulde Sod, brined pork shoulder is a good substitute.

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South Venice Beach, FL

Ingredients

  • 1/2 gallon water
  • 1 1/2 C. kosher salt
  • 3 lbs. pork shoulder roast (Boston butt), trimmed of excess fat
  • 2 heads garlic, sliced in half
  • 1 tsp. whole black peppercorns
  • 1 head green cabbage, cut into wedges
  • 1 lb. baby carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • spicy yellow mustard like Coleman's

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Directions

Dissolve the salt in the water in a large zip top bag. Add the pork, and remove as much air as you can. Place in the refrigerator overnight.

Transfer the brined pork to a large pot, add fresh water to cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the garlic and peppercorns. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer gently until pork is very tender, 2 to 3 hours. Remove pork and keep warm.

Add the cabbage and carrots to the cooking liquid. Bring to a boil and cook until the vegetables are almost tender, about 15 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer vegetables to a serving platter. Cut the pork into thick slices; and arrange on the platter with the vegetables. Spoon some of the hot cooking liquid over all before serving. Garnish with thyme. Serve with mustard on the side.

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