Growing up as a child corned beef was a staple in my family’s fridge, and the first thing I smelled walking into the Berghoff. It has been on the menu since 1914 and is a tradition that continues in the Restaurant as well as my own home today. With St. Patrick’s Day around the corner, corned beef is on my mind and hopefully on your plate. A corned beef sandwich, a stein of Berghoff beer, and a pickle at the bar, is how the Berghoff began over a century ago. I am honored to say that this tradition is still on the menu today, but with a twist.
I’ve been told that corned beef dates back to 17th century Ireland, though its roots lie in the German language. Kurnam is an Old Germanic Word that means small seed, and in this case is referring to the “corns” or small seeds of coarse salt that were used to cure the beef. Given its Irish and German history, corned beef makes the perfect St. Patty’s Day staple at the Berghoff or as part of your St. Patrick’s Day celebration.
My own personal favorite way to serve corned beef is in the form of a Ruben on Rye, with a stein of Berghoff beer and a pickle on the side of course! But what to do with the rest of that corned beef in your fridge? Well….tune into WGN tomorrow, Thursday March 3rd at 11:30am to see various ways to reuse, recycle, and reinvent corned beef.