Corn beef and cabbage is a classic Irish combination, and one I feel gets trotted out every St. Patrick’s Day. To mix it up a little bit, I switched out the corned beef for my deli favorite, pastrami, and instead of boiled cabbage, I turned to roasted root vegetables with cabbage. It’s still the same homey flavor, but with a twist.

Note: If you don’t want to deal with smoking the brisket you can slow roast the brisket in the oven. Just place in a dutch oven with the lid on, and cook at 250F for about 4 hours.


4 tablespoons fresh coarsely ground black pepper

2 tablespoons coriander powder

1 teaspoon mustard powder

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon paprika

2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons onion powder

2 tablespoons grapeseed oil

3 pounds brisket (I like the fat end)


Mix together the spice rub and massage the meat generously with it. If you have time, let meat rest for an hour at room temperature, or refrigerate for several hours or overnight.

Cover the brisket  and let it sit at room temperature while getting the smoker or charcoal grill fired up. Do not leave at room temperature for longer than 1 hour.

The grill is ready when the charcoal has burned to a white ash. If using a grill instead of a smoker, arrange the coals on 1 side of the grill, leaving an area large enough for the brisket to cook indirectly with no coals directly underneath the meat.

When the grill has reached 200 to 225 degrees F, scatter 1/4 of the wood chips over the coals, close the grate, put the brisket on the grill and close the lid.

Maintain a 200 to 225 degree F cooking temperature inside the grill, adding coals every 2 hours or as necessary. Add wood chips and spray the brisket with apple juice every time you add new coals. Try not to lift the lid of the grill at any other time.

When the brisket reaches an internal temperature of 165 to 170 degrees F on an instant read meat thermometer (after about 4 to 5 hours), remove it from the grill and double wrap in aluminum foil to keep the juices from leaking out. Return the brisket to the grill (or smoker) The brisket is finished cooking when it is very tender and reaches an internal temperature of 190 degrees F, about another 1 to 2 hours. Let rest for 45 minutes, then unwrap and slice.


1/2 pound carrots, peeled (halved lengthwise if large)

1/2 pound parsnips, peeled (halved lengthwise if large)

1/2 pound  yams, wedged

1/2 pound  turnips, wedged

1/4 head cabbage, wedged

1/2 cup olive oil

1 tablespoon thyme leaves

1 teaspoon rosemary, chopped

salt and pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 425 F.

Rub the vegetables with olive oil, herbs, and salt and pepper.  Spread across two or three rimmed baking sheets and roast for 30 to 40 minutes, until the vegetables are cooked through. Broil for the last 5 minutes, to get a nice, deep color on them. Enjoy!