First Pastrami

Discussion in 'Beef' started by whiskeyfoot, Mar 11, 2012.

  1. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

    Happy Sunday morning everyone!  

    I've already lost an hour in the day, so I figured I better get on it!

    Bought a 4 pound corned beef yesterday, and am using a combination of what I've learned on this forum from previous pastrami quests, and my favorite book (smoke&spice).  Basically instead of curing my own brisket, I opted for the corned beef.  The rest of the recipe is based off what was in the book.  

    1/4 cup crushed pepper

    1/4 cup crushed coriander

    1/4 cup crushed mustard (i used a little less since I rubbed brisket down with mustard)

    6 tablespoons kosher salt (omitted this since corned beef is salty already)

    2 tablespoons garlic powder




    I used a coffee grinder to crush each fresh spice, and it worked quite well!  A little inconsistent as far as size of each spice when it was done, but I think it kind of adds an 'old world' aspect to the rub, a few whole pepper corns and seeds patted on the outside of the brisket is just fine by me!


    She's on now, smoker at 200-220*, I have no idea how long it's going to take, as I've heard 12 hours, and my book says around 5.  I guess we'll find out!  Will have pictures once it's done!  Thanks for looking!
  2. Hi Whiskeyfoot,

    I have never made Pastrami and am looking forward to hearing how yours went!  I'd like to try this too.

    Good Luck and I'll be checking back! 

  3. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

    Will do!  She's chugging along nicely now, just added some ABTs stuffed with andouille sausage for good measure, and snacking of course!  About to go see what the internal temp is....
  4. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

  5. tigerregis

    tigerregis Meat Mopper

    Remember, you will probably still have to steam it to make it tender.
  6. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

  7. scubadoo97

    scubadoo97 Smoking Fanatic

  8. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

    Well, I'm pretty sure it's been over 8 hours, and it's stalled at 151*

    Hoping I see some increase in temp soon, cuz it's been there for what seems like two hours or so.......?

  9. rdknb

    rdknb Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hang in there, it will be worth it in the end.  As said above it will be tender and taste great when done.  I slice mine thin and use for lunch meat.
  10. raptor700

    raptor700 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I love a good Strami sammy

    Can't wait to see it sliced [​IMG]
  11. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

    Well, according to my first post the brisket has been on almost 12 hours.  Left to go get some dinner with the room mates with a internal temp of 153* and returned about two hours later to an internal temp of 156*.  I dunno what the deal is, I even checked it with a second thermometer to make sure it's reading right, and it said the same......

    I just have an early day tomorrow, so I had to pull it, and I'm hoping it will turn out good.  Resting on the counter now............sigh.....[​IMG]
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2012
  12. sprky

    sprky Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    12 hours and a 4 pound brisket, with an IT of 156, something sounds off to me. I have never had a brisket take longer then 2.25 hours per pound to an IT of 190-195 with smoker temp of 200-225. Since you know your IT of your meat is on, by checking with another thermometer,  I am betting your smoker temp was low. 
  13. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    You pulled it too soon. They can stall for hours. I've had them go 18-20 hours with a 4-5 hour stall. Unless you take them to 205-210 they will be chewy. You should have pulled it out wrapped it in foil & finished it in a 225 degree oven. You can still do that. Put it in a pan with some juice & a foil cover & cook it to 205-210.
  14. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

    Ok, so I have a couple of replies.  I totally agree on the odd IT temps, the question about my smoker is:  If I'm reading 200-230 with a probe thermometer (you can see it in one of the pictures poked thru a potato), then is there another issue regarding the temp of my smoker?  I know it seems to fluctuate a lot, but I was told elsewhere on the forum that it's common for an electric smoker to do that.  

    As far as the pastrami goes, I have to say, even with an internal temp of 156*, it seems to be in pretty good shape, texture and tenderness-wise.  Falls apart quite nicely!  My only complaint is it is FRIGGIN SALTY!!!!  I mean, I am not scared of a bit-o-salt when it comes to deli meats, etc, but this thing is too much for me.  So I'm quite displeased with that.

    I didn't soak it in water to start, as it seemed like a 50/50 split on people's opinions on whether to do so or not.  I opted the easy route, as usual thinking I could deal with a bit of saltiness.

    Anyways, here's a pic of the result, I will actually slice some up tonight so you can see the juiciness of it...just dunno what I can do with it, but maybe use it as a bacon substitute or something due to the saltiness.  I'm still going to try making a sammy tonight with kraut etc to see how it tastes.  Thanks for the help!  I'm learning with each adventure! [​IMG]

  15. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

    Well I wrapped it up and let it get to room temp before putting in fridge last night.  It does seem to be decent to me, instead of a picture maybe I'll shoot a little film of it to show how nice it falls apart, etc.  Definitely not chewy.  But SALTY! [​IMG]
  16. whiskeyfoot

    whiskeyfoot Fire Starter

    So as a quick update, I just want to say I may have jumped the gun a bit in saying it was too salty....Made a sammich two nights ago and honestly it's pretty dang good!!  It's probably a tad salty, but nothing more than normal pastrami I've had in the past.  Took a quick picture, so here u go!  In the future, I may try to soak the brisket for a little while to draw some of the salt out of it, other than that I highly recommend giving it a shot!  My results were willy-nilly, since I didn't even come close to an IT of 180+, but all I know is it's not dry, it's cooked through, and it tastes great!  

  17. scubadoo97

    scubadoo97 Smoking Fanatic

    Not off at all.  I've had several 4 lb pastrami briskets take this long.  Stalled for hours

    If you trust your temps then you just need to wait or cook at a higher temp if crunched for time.

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