Newfoundland Jiggs Dinner


Newfoundlanders, in general, love and look forward, with anticipation , to our meal of Jiggs dinner or as some people call it, corned beef and cabbage, I’m cooking a meal for our dinner. Unfortunately, I don’t have cabbage. There are two reasons. My wife doesn’t like cabbage and I didn’t see a head of good cabbage at the supermarkets. ( How to use don’t and doesn’

The photo is a jiggs dinner with turkey and gravy.

The most important ingredient is a good salt meat.

What is salt meat? It is beef that has been cured in brine. Years ago, all salt meat  that we had access to, had a bone in the meat. I suppose it was the blade roast  Today, we can buy steak cut salt meat.

Also, you can buy salt riblets. I like them if they’re beef  but mostly what is available is brined pork riblets.

My preference is a piece of salt meat with the bone.

I’ve cooked many jigs dinners, over the years but two are memorable.

1. My wife was in hospital to have her tonsils removed and I decide to cook a jiggs dinner for my daughter, her fiancé and me. I had three big pieces of salt meat and was looking forward to the meal.

The meaI was too salty…. I forgot to soak the meat or taste the cooking water. Two things you never omit.

2. We ( my wife and I, her sister and brother-in-law) had decided to cook a salt meat and cabbage meal on our may 24th fishing (trouting) trip.

The sun was shining and it was going to be a good weather day. We drove for about an hour and stopped on the side of the highway. The pond that my wives brother-in-law had chosen was about a half hours walk or so from the road.

It’s hard enough to cross bogs and make a path through the woods with your fishing equipment but it’s much worse with pots and pans and a box of vegetables. What were we thinking?

The pond was further then we thought or it took us much longer to get there. The women were not happy. The flies were bad.

We didn’t cook that day but ate sandwiches that my wife had packed. It was a poor day for trout and some peoples nerves were, as we say, “rubbed raw.”

I don’t recall what happened to the salt meat!



Pot Licker . A derogatory reference to one’s social status… esp. to one’s status of being poor and/or starving. If you are poor you would “lick the bottom of the pot”  Urban dictionary definition.

The pot liquor is the liquid that is left over from a jigs dinner. Some people drink a cup of the liquid, some use it to add to a gravy and some people use it to make a soup.

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My Newfoundland Labrador