The is the second edition of a new Lost City feature wherein I rummage through my library of old New York restaurant histories and cookbooks and dig up the prime dishes the denizens of the five boroughs dined on in years gone by.
I'm about one day late for a good recipe of Corned Beef and Cabbage. Sorry. I didn't realize I had it until last night. The formula belongs to Ye Olde Chop House, of which no one talks anymore. It was, for a long time, the oldest restaurant in New York, having been founded in 1800 as Old Tom's Chop House. 118 Cedar Street was its original home and it stayed on that street for most of its existence until it expires in the 1970s.
The name can tell you what kind of place it was. Old and woody. A lot of pewterware and dusty pictures on the walls. The was a tap room and a "pleasantly gloomy" grill room in back. In the grill room, the booths were boxy and separated from each other by shared pieces of wood. Sorta looked like today's office cubicles, only much, much better. It closed down on the weekends, since its clients were virtually all Wall Streeters.
So, Corned Beef and Cabbage. Here's how they did it:
3 1/2 pounds brisket of corned beef
1 head cabbage
bacon rind or ham bone
2 teaspoons salt
dash of pepper
4 tablespoons butter
Simmer beef slowly for 3 hours in water to which spices, 1 onion, carrots, and celery leaves have been added. Boil cabbage in fresh water with bacon rind or ham bone. Flavor with an union, salt, and pepper. Cook until soft, about 20 minutes, and drain. Brown butter and pour over cabbage. Serve with corned beef. Makes 4 or 5 portions.
Simple enough. Though they don't say, I imagine they mean the onions, cabbage and carrots to be chopped.
(I'm not sure of the date of the above image. It may be of a later version of the Chop House on Broadway.)
Previous "Recipes of the Lost City"