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Thread: How to make pastrami

  1. #1
    notbob Guest

    Default How to make pastrami

    We've yakked about a lot of stuff, but I don't think I recall this one.
    Just exactly how does one make big ol' slab of brisket into a to-die-for
    slab of pastrami? I'm pretty good at bbq'ing a brisket, TX style, but
    that's not pastrami. Yes, you can refer me to the bbq grp, but I'd rather
    not. rfc needs to flog this one, once and for all. What do you say...
    anyone here know how to do a good homemade pastrami?

    nb

  2. #2
    Christine Dabney Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    On Wed, 19 Nov 2008 00:19:33 GMT, notbob <[email protected]> wrote:

    >We've yakked about a lot of stuff, but I don't think I recall this one.
    >Just exactly how does one make big ol' slab of brisket into a to-die-for
    >slab of pastrami? I'm pretty good at bbq'ing a brisket, TX style, but
    >that's not pastrami. Yes, you can refer me to the bbq grp, but I'd rather
    >not. rfc needs to flog this one, once and for all. What do you say...
    >anyone here know how to do a good homemade pastrami?
    >
    >nb


    The book Charcuterie, by Michael Ruhlman has great instructions for
    doing it. And no, I am not going to post it here. It is not a one
    step process, as it involves the spicing/curing, the smoking, and then
    the steaming.

    I haven't tried looking online for the instructions.

    Christine

  3. #3
    merryb Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    On Nov 18, 4:25*pm, Christine Dabney <artis...@ix.netcom.com> wrote:
    > On Wed, 19 Nov 2008 00:19:33 GMT, notbob <not...@nothome.com> wrote:
    > >We've yakked about a lot of stuff, but I don't think I recall this one.
    > >Just exactly how does one make big ol' slab of brisket into a to-die-for
    > >slab of pastrami? *I'm pretty good at bbq'ing a brisket, TX style, but
    > >that's not pastrami. *Yes, you can refer me to the bbq grp, but I'd rather
    > >not. *rfc needs to flog this one, once and for all. *What do you say....
    > >anyone here know how to do a good homemade pastrami? *

    >
    > >nb

    >
    > The book Charcuterie, by Michael Ruhlman has great instructions for
    > doing it. *And no, I am not going to post it here. *It is not a one
    > step process, as it involves the spicing/curing, the smoking, and then
    > the steaming. *
    >
    > I haven't tried looking online for the instructions.
    >
    > Christine


    Pastrami tease!

  4. #4
    notbob Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    On 2008-11-19, Christine Dabney <[email protected]> wrote:

    > The book Charcuterie, by Michael Ruhlman has great instructions for
    > doing it. And no, I am not going to post it here.


    Heh heh....

    Well, thank you for informing us of what you are unwilling to do.

    I googled Charcuterie and pastrami and got this from Chowhound:

    "Sorry to interrupt, but please bear in mind that we don't allow the posting
    of copyright recipes to the Home Cooking board."

    What was that thing about recipes being copyrighted? Yes? No?

    Please, let's keep the information to what can actually benefit rfc members.


    nb

  5. #5
    Christine Dabney Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    On Tue, 18 Nov 2008 16:33:04 -0800 (PST), merryb <[email protected]>
    wrote:


    >Pastrami tease!


    It is a pretty involved process, and several pages long, if I recall
    correctly. If you guys want the recipe, go to the library and take
    out the book. I am not going to repost it here.

    Christine

  6. #6
    notbob Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    On 2008-11-19, Christine Dabney <[email protected]> wrote:

    > It is a pretty involved process, and several pages long, if I recall
    > correctly. If you guys want the recipe, go to the library and take
    > out the book. I am not going to repost it here.


    While I see your point, if I had wanted to go to the library, I wouldn't
    have posted the query on rfc.

    nb

  7. #7
    Sheldon Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    On Nov 18, 7:19�pm, notbob <not...@nothome.com> wrote:
    > We've yakked about a lot of stuff, but I don't think I recall this one.
    > Just exactly how does one make big ol' slab of brisket into a to-die-for
    > slab of pastrami? �I'm pretty good at bbq'ing a brisket, TX style, but
    > that's not pastrami. �Yes, you can refer me to the bbq grp, but I'd rather
    > not. �rfc needs to flog this one, once and for all. �Whatdo you say...
    > anyone here know how to do a good homemade pastrami? �
    >
    > nb


    This has been discussed to death here. Essentially pastrami is smoked
    corned beef, the best being made from the part of the brisket known as
    the "deckel". Of course some folks think pastrami made from turkey is
    wonderful, they are usally from texas and are as most texans
    affllicted with a termial case of TIAD. I seriously doubt there has
    ever been a real corned beef let alone a real pastrami in all of
    texas, ever.

  8. #8
    Ed Pawlowski Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami


    "notbob" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]..
    > On 2008-11-19, Christine Dabney <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> It is a pretty involved process, and several pages long, if I recall
    >> correctly. If you guys want the recipe, go to the library and take
    >> out the book. I am not going to repost it here.

    >
    > While I see your point, if I had wanted to go to the library, I wouldn't
    > have posted the query on rfc.
    >
    > nb




    What is pastrami and how do I make my own?


    For best results, use trimmed briskets.





    Start with a curing brine. This makes enough for 25 lbs of meat.





    5 quarts ice water (about 38-40F)

    8 oz. salt

    5 oz. Prague Powder #1

    5 oz. powdered dextrose

    1 Tb garlic juice



    Prepare and cure as for corned beef.



    After curing, remove from brine and rub liberally with cracked black pepper
    and coriander seeds.



    Smoke at 140F until the meat is dry and then increase smoker temperature to
    200-220F and hold until internal temperature of meat reaches 170-180F.



    Chill overnight before using. This meat is fully cooked.







    Corn Your Own Beef
    Categories: Beef, Cured, Preserving Yield: 1 Beef



    1 1/3 c Kosher salt

    1 tb Peppercorns; cracked

    2 ts Ground allspice

    2 ts Ground thyme

    1 ts Paprika

    1 ts Dried sage

    1 ts Bay leaf; crumbled

    10 lb Top or bottom round of beef

    or eye round, boneless chuck or brisket; fully trimmed



    Combine the salt, cracked peppercorns, allspice, thyme, paprika, sage and
    bay leaf in a bowl.



    Place the meat in a plastic bag roomy enough to hold the meat comfortably.
    Rub the combined seasonings all over it. Press as much air out of the bag as
    possible, then tie it securely closed and set it in a pan or bowl. Cover
    with a second pan, fill the second pan with weights and place it in the
    refrigerator, where the temperature should remain at 37 or 38 degrees F.



    Within a few hours, red juice will begin to exude from the meat. The cure
    has begun. Once a day, without opening the bag, massage the meat with its
    juices and spices and turn the bag over. You might want to put a sign on
    your refrigerator to remind yourself. In two weeks the cure is done and the
    special flavor has been achieved.



    The beef will now keep, still in the corning liquid, several months under
    refrigeration, but turn it every few days to be sure all is well.



    Before cooking the beef, wash off the salt cure and soak the meat in a large
    bowl of cold water in the refrigerator, changing the water two or three
    times. As the salt leaves the flesh, the meat softens and when thoroughly
    desalted it will feel almost like fresh beef. Cut off a snippet, cook it in
    simmering water and taste it tom make sure it's thoroughly desalted.
    Desalting may take two or three days if the meat has been cured a number of
    weeks.



    Once the meat is desalted, it is just as perishable as fresh meat, so keep
    it in the fridge and cook it soon!



    Put it in a large pot of cold water. Bring the water to a boil, turn down to
    a simmer and cook the beef 3 to 4 hours, until the meat is fork-tender.
    Serves 20.



    The brisket is the traditional cut used to make corned beef, but the top or
    bottom round will slice better. And don't expect the meat to be pink. Doing
    it at home results in a brown or even grey color.



    From the Hartford (CT) Courant, 3/13/96



    MMed and posted by Dave Sacerdote









    Home-Cured Corned Beef


    Categories: Beef, Preserving, Cured Yield: 10 Lb beef



    10 lb Beef roast

    5/8 c Curing salt

    5/8 c Pickling spice

    10 Whole cloves

    1/3 c Peppercorns

    5/8 c Brown sugar

    2 1/2 ts Saltpeter; for color, opt

    2 1/2 tb Garlic cloves, crushed



    Combine garlic, bay leaves, cloves, coriander seeds, peppercorns, and
    mustard seed in blender. Blend until coarsely chopped. Add brown sugar. Set
    aside.



    Trim roast (venison, beef, etc.), weigh and measure 1 level Tablespoon of
    curing salt per pound. Add measured curing salt to spice mixture you set
    aside.



    Rub spice mixture into roast, pressing in well. Measure roast at thickest
    point. Place into heavy freezing bag and close securely. Place in shallow
    pan in refrigerator. Cure 5 days per inch of measured thickness, turning bag
    daily.



    At end of curing time wrap and freeze.



    To cook: Drain juices, if desired rinse thoroughly under cold running water
    to remove extra salt and spice pieces, wrap in foil and bake sealed at 300
    degrees 2 to 3 hours or until tender. Or use in any corned beef recipe.



    Dorothy's comments: This recipe has been tested by my whole family on both
    beef and venison with the results that if I do not have one either in
    process or residing in the freezer ready for instant cooking I certainly
    hear about my oversight! It has become the most requested top of the list
    for both Birthday and Christmas gift lists. For ease in converting the ratio
    of meat to spices I have set my serving size to the most often used size of
    roast by my family. I have used this on several different cuts of meat,
    however, our favorite is bottom round. Recently I became lazy and instead of
    grinding the spices in my blender I left them whole. The result was exactly
    the same in flavor and since I hate to bite into a spice by mistake and
    rinse them off before I cook the corned beef, it made the rinsing task a
    whole lot easier! I haven't tried using brisket myself, however since that
    seems to be the only cut of meat that you can get as corned beef in the
    supermarkets around where I live, I imagine it would work fine. Actually,
    avoiding brisket was one reason I decided to corn all my own meat at home!
    IMHO briskets "might" make good doorstops! Seriously though, the main reason
    we don't care for brisket is only because mostly it has a high amount of
    fat. The corning process does such a good job of tenderizing that there is
    no problem with the toughness. Our favorite cut of meat to corn is the
    bottom round since it seems to be a leaner cut of meat. Usually I just cook
    the corned beef in the oven with a few potatoes, carrots and celery with it.
    Or my husband likes to wrap it in foil and cook it on the barbecue grill,
    unwrapping and browning it the last 15 to

    20 minutes of the cooking time.



    Sylvia's comments: on brisket, it produced a very flavorful corned beef,
    usable after about 12 hours in the crockpot. I substituted 4 Tb. pickling
    spice for 3 bay leaves, 2 Tb. coriander seeds, and 1 Tb mustard seed. I
    also used whole spices without grinding them.



  9. #9
    Ed Pawlowski Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami


    "notbob" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]..
    > On 2008-11-19, Christine Dabney <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> It is a pretty involved process, and several pages long, if I recall
    >> correctly. If you guys want the recipe, go to the library and take
    >> out the book. I am not going to repost it here.

    >
    > While I see your point, if I had wanted to go to the library, I wouldn't
    > have posted the query on rfc.
    >
    > nb




    Pastrami


    4 pounds beef flanken or brisket

    1/2 cup coarse (kosher) salt

    2 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar

    1 tablespoon ground ginger

    1 tablespoon coarsely cracked black peppercorns

    4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

    2 tablespoons coriander seeds, coarsely cracked



    With a trussing needle or a large darning needle threaded with twine, take a
    stitch through the narrow end of the meat, Bring out both ends of the string
    and make a loop about 3 inches long for hanging. Mix together thoroughly
    the salt, brown sugar, ginger, pepper, garlic, and coriander. Rub the
    mixture into every part of the meat's surface, massaging it well and coating
    it evenly.



    Wrap the meat in aluminum) foil and then enclose it in a plastic bag.
    Refrigerate for 8 to 12 days, turning the package daily or as often as you
    think of it. Remove the seasoned meat from the package, patting onto it any
    seasonings that may have fallen off.



    Hang it by its cord loop in a cool, breezy spot (70 degrees or less is
    ideal) or in front of an electric fan; let dry for 24 hours. Remove the
    shelves from the smoker, hang an oven thermometer in it, and preheat it
    following the manufacturer's instructions (or, lacking instructions, preheat
    for 45 minutes), adding a painful of presoaked hickory or other hardwood
    chips (see page 31) after about 30 minutes. When smoke begins to emerge
    from the vent, hang the pastrami in the smoker, close the door, and smoke
    steadily for from 2 to 4 hours, depending on the heat your smoker produces
    (2 hours will be enough if the temperature is as high as 150 degrees) and
    the degree of smokiness you like; smoke the longer time if the temperature
    inside the smoker is in the 100- to 120-degree range.



    Cool the pastrami, then wrap and refrigerate overnight or for up to 2 or 3
    days before cooking.



    To cook: Cover the pastrami with a generous amount of cold water and simmer
    very gently until completely tender, at least 2 hours; the exact time will
    depend on the thickness of the meat.



    Cool partially in the cooking water, then either serve at once or drain,
    cool, and refrigerate, wrapped. To reheat cooked pastrami, slice thin (cut
    on the bias slightly as you would flank steak) and steam briefly until hot
    through



  10. #10
    zxcvbob Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    notbob wrote:
    > We've yakked about a lot of stuff, but I don't think I recall this one.
    > Just exactly how does one make big ol' slab of brisket into a to-die-for
    > slab of pastrami? I'm pretty good at bbq'ing a brisket, TX style, but
    > that's not pastrami. Yes, you can refer me to the bbq grp, but I'd rather
    > not. rfc needs to flog this one, once and for all. What do you say...
    > anyone here know how to do a good homemade pastrami?
    >
    > nb



    Pastrami is smoked corned beef. So you have to cure (pickle) the beef
    first, before you hot smoke it.

    The pickling recipe should contain saltpeter, or "Prague powder" or
    equivalent, or Morton's Tender Quick. But it's more of a process than
    an actual recipe. I haven't done it.

    Bob

  11. #11
    Tim C. Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami


    > 5 oz. Prague Powder #1


    What's that?
    --
    Tim C.

  12. #12
    bolivar Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami


    "notbob" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]..
    > We've yakked about a lot of stuff, but I don't think I recall this one.
    > Just exactly how does one make big ol' slab of brisket into a to-die-for
    > slab of pastrami? I'm pretty good at bbq'ing a brisket, TX style, but
    > that's not pastrami. Yes, you can refer me to the bbq grp, but I'd rather
    > not. rfc needs to flog this one, once and for all. What do you say...
    > anyone here know how to do a good homemade pastrami?
    >
    > nb



    nb,

    Ask modom, he made some a while back, and the pictures looked fantastic,
    and he said it tasted great. He may know some tips about avoiding some
    things, and how he'd do it differently a second time. Of course, he may
    also tell you that you need to read the instructions in the book first so
    you'll understand what he's saying.

    boli



  13. #13
    Mark A.Meggs Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    On Wed, 19 Nov 2008 14:58:44 +0100, "Tim C." <[email protected]> wrote:

    >
    >> 5 oz. Prague Powder #1

    >
    >What's that?


    A mixture of 6.25% sodium nitrite and 93.75% salt. Also called pink
    powder becuase of the coloring that's added to it.

    - Mark

  14. #14
    Ed Pawlowski Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami


    "Tim C." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:1frjtesv9bmd3$.1d2capz31n963$.[email protected] ..
    >
    >> 5 oz. Prague Powder #1

    >
    > What's that?
    > --
    > Tim C.


    It is the cure, or preservative that gives hams and corned beef the pink
    color. Goes under different names, such as Instacure No. 1, Modern cure,
    etc.

    It is a sodium nitrite and salt mix with red dyes so you don't confuse it
    with table salt. The salt and sodium nitrite is dissolved in water, then it
    is dried and ground so that the mix is well dispersed throughout and not
    lumped in one spot.

    Morton's Tenderquick is a blend of both nitrate and nitrites with the salt.
    Different amount is used so read the instructions if you go that route. .



  15. #15
    Tim C. Guest

    Default Re: How to make pastrami

    On Wed, 19 Nov 2008 22:33:24 -0500, Ed Pawlowski wrote in post :
    <news:7Q4Vk.5916$[email protected]> :

    > "Tim C." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:1frjtesv9bmd3$.1d2capz31n963$.[email protected] ..
    >>
    >>> 5 oz. Prague Powder #1

    >>
    >> What's that?
    >> --
    >> Tim C.

    >
    > It is the cure, or preservative that gives hams and corned beef the pink
    > color. Goes under different names, such as Instacure No. 1, Modern cure,
    > etc.
    >
    > It is a sodium nitrite and salt mix with red dyes so you don't confuse it
    > with table salt. The salt and sodium nitrite is dissolved in water, then it
    > is dried and ground so that the mix is well dispersed throughout and not
    > lumped in one spot.
    >
    > Morton's Tenderquick is a blend of both nitrate and nitrites with the salt.
    > Different amount is used so read the instructions if you go that route. .


    Thanks to you and Mark Never heard the name before.
    --
    Tim C.

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