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Becky Luigart-Stayner Photo by: Becky Luigart-Stayner

New England Boiled Dinner

Defatting the cooking liquid is an easy step that removes a good bit of fat from this classic one-dish meal. Store the extra strained vegetable cooking liquid in airtight containers in the freezer, if desired, and use it to flavor soups, sauces, or rice.

Cooking Light JANUARY 2005

  • Yield: 8 servings


  • 2 1/2 pounds cured corned beef brisket, trimmed
  • 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 whole allspice
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 3 cups thinly sliced carrot (about 1 pound)
  • 2 1/2 cups peeled (4 x 1/2-inch) strips rutabaga (about 12 ounces)
  • 2 1/4 cups thinly sliced parsnips (about 12 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup frozen pearl onions
  • 16 small red potatoes, halved (about 2 pounds)
  • 1 small head green cabbage, cut into 8 wedges


Place beef in a large Dutch oven. Add black peppercorns, mustard seeds, cloves, allspice, and bay leaves. Cover with water to 2 inches above beef; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; partially cover, and simmer 2 hours or until beef is tender. Remove beef from pan.

Strain cooking liquid through a sieve over a large bowl, reserving cooking liquid; discard solids. Place 1 large heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag inside each of 2 bowls. Pour reserved cooking liquid into bags; let stand 10 minutes (fat will rise to the top). Seal bags; carefully snip off 1 bottom corner of 1 bag. Drain liquid into pan, stopping before fat layer reaches the opening; discard fat. Repeat procedure with remaining bag. Add beef, carrot, rutabaga, parsnips, onions, and potatoes to pan; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes. Arrange cabbage on top; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes or until cabbage is tender.

Remove beef from pan, and cut across the grain into 16 slices. Strain vegetable mixture through a sieve over a large bowl, reserving vegetable mixture and cooking liquid. Place 1 cabbage wedge, 1 1/2 cups vegetable mixture, and 2 beef slices into each of 8 large soup bowls. Pour 1/2 cup reserved cooking liquid over each serving; reserve remaining cooking liquid for another use.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 337
  • Calories from fat: 36%
  • Fat: 13.3g
  • Saturated fat: 4.1g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 6.2g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.7g
  • Protein: 17.5g
  • Carbohydrate: 38.5g
  • Fiber: 6.4g
  • Cholesterol: 46mg
  • Iron: 3.5mg
  • Sodium: 951mg
  • Calcium: 110mg

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New England Boiled Dinner recipe