|Corned Beef Hash breakfast via Wikipedia|
Something that has been on my mind for a few decades, is why Irish-Americans gravitate to eating corned beef on St. Patrick's Day and drink a lot of green beer. Okay, I understand the green beer part, but I've always wondered about corned beef since I've never eaten it and have received a LOT of junk mail promoting it for breakfast and lunch on St. Patrick's Day. So, I am going to summarize based on these 3 key websites (and yes, this is my bibliography):
The name of corned beef most likely came about when meat was dry-cured with salt in Europe and the Middle East. The word "corn" derives from Old English which describes the meat being dry-cured in CORNS of salt. The pellets of salt were approximately the size of kernels of corn and were rubbed into the meat to keep it from spoiling.
|Canned Corned Beef via Wikipedia|
During the Great Potato Famine, raising cattle to sustain the British Isle and Atlantic trade crowded out land in Ireland for other agricultural development and prevented the raising of crops to feed the local population. Which is why a ton of people from Ireland emigrated to the U.S. Because beef was less expensive than pork here, that is why the Irish immigrants substituted it in recipes on holidays.
Which leads me to my conclusion. According to all of the research & reading that I've been doing, corned beef on St. Patrick's Day is an Irish-American tradition, not a true Irish national tradition. That's why I haven't had it yet and why I'll be making a bacon joint instead...