The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, and my Irish luck, is to have fresh mache, an early spring green, from Deep Roots Farm (Moscow, Idaho), raw, unpasteurized goat’s milk garlic basil chevre from Red Roof Farmstead (Athol, Idaho) and corned beef from Oregon Country Beef (brined by the Moscow Food Co-op’s meat department) on St. Patrick’s Day.
If you have never had mache, it is a lovely, sweet green with rosettes of six to eight leaves. Native to France, this green is referred to as a corn salad green since it is planted after the corn harvest. It is really only available March to early May, as it bolts when the weather warms.
The corned beef takes approximately 50 minutes per pound to cook, so start it early in the afternoon if you want it for your evening meal. This recipe I adapted from one passed down to me from my grandmother whose father immigrated from Ireland in the late 1800s. I know its traditional to have corned beef with cabbage, carrots and potatoes (see what local produce is still available at the Moscow Food Co-op), however, I prefer a fresh green salad, especially when the greens and cheese are local!
Place corned beef in a large soup pot. Cover with about 3 inches of water. Peel off outer paper skin of the onion and stick the cloves in the onion. Place the onion, uncut, into the pot. Add peppercorns, cider vinegar, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Turn down heat and boil 3.5 hours or until meat falls apart easily. Remove from heat and let sit 15 minutes. Remove meat from pot onto a clean cutting surface. Scrape off fat. Slice meat across the grain and transfer to serving plate or individual plates.
Spring Mache Salad with Goat Cheese and Walnut Vinaigrette
Fresh spring Deep Roots Farm mache greens
Fresh Red Roof Farmstead garlic basil chevre
3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1 medium Affinity Farm shallot, finely minced
3 teaspoons Dijon mustard
8 tablespoons walnut oil
6 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and freshly milled pepper
Combine sherry vinegar, shallot and ¼ teaspoon salt in an eight-ounce jar. Let sit for 15 minutes. Add mustard, oils and approximately ½ teaspoon milled pepper. Place lid on the jar and shake vigorously for about one minute. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
Rinse greens and spin dry. Pile on plate, place ball of chevre in the center. Drizzle with vinaigrette. Serve with slices of steaming corned beef. Enjoy every delicious bite!