Montrel Smoked Meat

Discussion in 'Beef' started by bladebuilder, Jan 23, 2015.

  1. After much internet research, deep digging, phone calls to family in Quebec, and several test runs with different recipes, I have one that is  well, as close to the famous delis as I have been able to make. So this thread is again in the early stages, but I will post to allow any interested to follow.

    A couple wees ago, I picked up a brisket, that was well, rather disappointing. Long story short, I picked up the fresh replacement yesterday. This one looks like beef! Not a fatty pork belly! Yeah, it was that bad...

    So with out further rambling...

    This brisket is nice!


    So the detailed recipe I used is listed by percent weight of ingredients. Total weight of this piece is 4520 grams (grams keeps the math simpler and results more accurate)

    I used for the dry cure...

    180 gr kosher salt

    11.3 gr Cure #1

    30 gr ground corriander

    20 gr cracked black pepper (recipe called for 30 gr...)

    30 gr ground mustard seed

    9 gr garlic powder

    9 gr cinnamon

    9 gr fennel seed

    4.5 gr ground cloves

    2 gr ground chilli

    The blend spices, the smell is amazing!


    And all rubbed in.


    [if gte mso 9]><xml> <o:OfficeDocumentSettings> <o:AllowPNG/> </o:OfficeDocumentSettings></xml><![endif]Dry Cure Procedure from the recipe.

    1. Trim some fat off the brisket, particularly on sides and top. Leave at least 1/4 to 1/2" of the fat cap on the bottom.
    2. Rub the garlic powder on the brisket.
    3. Combine the kosher salt with the curing salt, being mindful of meat to salt ratios. Rub the brisket with the salt mixture. If there's excess, throw it in the bottom of the ziplock bag.
    4. Grind the remaining dry cure ingredients and mix together in a large bowl. Rub the meat with the dry cure spices. There shouldn't be much excess, but it can go in the ziplock.
    5. Place the brisket in the bottom of the ziplock back, try to ensure any excess that was in the bag is evenly distributed on the meat.
    6. Squeeze the air out of the bag and close the zipper; store the ziplock bag in a cold room or refrigerator, around 38-40F (not super cold).
    7. Overhaul (turn over) the brisket every 12 hours or so, for 7 days. Smaller briskets can take less time (roughly, I'd estimate a 6 lb brisket for 5 days, a 15 lb brisket for 9 days).
    8. After the cure, take the brisket out of the bag, and rinse off the curing spices.
    9. Fill a large sink with water and soak the brisket for 3 hours, changing water every 1/2 hour. Pat the brisket dry with paper towels.

    More to follow!!
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    Last edited: Jan 23, 2015
  2. Can't Wait !!!

    Gary
     
  3. dingo007

    dingo007 Smoking Fanatic

    Im in....[​IMG]
     
  4. Gentlemen, and ladies of course!!

    After nearly 2 weeks of fridge time curing, I got around to the next step on this fine hunk-o-meat!

    After unwrapping, and rinsing, the meat soaked for a couple hours, with a couple water changes.


    I was a little nervous about the flavor, and salt levels, so I snuck a wee bit and fried it just to get an idea... Mmmmm...

    While the soaking was taking place, I weighed and ground the rub spices, used an old hand crank grinder so speed up the grinding, but not overgrind.



    Next, into the offset smoker on a Q-Mat, Kingsford natural charcoal for the heat, and Todds Apple pellets in the AMNPS for added flavor!! Damn cold here today, -35 with the wind chill, and blowing snow.


    Coudn't keep the heat up with all the damn wind, so smoked to 120* and oven finished to 165*


    Oh dear Lord, the smell!! Had to steel a taste!


    The color is great, light marbling, say a medium fat? How to describe thee taste? Hell if I know, its aromatic on the tongue, a hint of sweet, a bit of heat, touch of smoke, and the blend of spices is amazing!! Its now foiled, and plastic wrapped, into the fridge till Saturday, then a slow 3 hour steam before the family and friends pop by!!

    Pics to follow!
     
    disco likes this.
  5. nice looking meat there bladebuilder. can not wait to see more. good job

    dannylang
     
  6. radioguy

    radioguy Smoking Fanatic

    I'm in and following Bladebuilder. Can't wait to see results. Never had Montreal but have read on it. How does it compare to pastrami?

    RG
     
  7. Ummmm   looks great

    Gary
     
  8. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    That really looks great! I have had the worst luck first corning and then with store bought corned beef attempting pastrami. My last attempt was edible after I found to steam it. I guess I should try again with St. Paddy's approacking. But its dang sure an expensive thing to experiment with while learning now-a-days!

    Excellent looking! Actually my wouth is watering.

    BTW that is a flat right? Not a packer?
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2015
  9. The light is piss poor, and the color isn't represented correctly, sorry about that. Will try for better pictures tomorrow.

    As to the diff between pastrami and smoked meat, I would only be guessing. The only pastrami I have had is storebought/deli dept "says its pastrami on the plastic"  variety. My dads family are from the Montreal/Sherbrooke area of Quebec, so for that reason I have concentrated my early efforts on Smoked meat. Its legacy and history are well established there. But to compare to what I have bought from the deli, I dont think its quite as sweet as pastrami. Also the spices seem to have a more complex flavor, not overpowering, just more.

    @Foamheart This is a whole brisket, flat and point. My pics are of the flat side. It was fresh cut for me which was nice, never frozen.

    If anyone wants the full recipe I used, just ask. Be happy to share!
     
  10. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Man that looks great.

    We always want recipes if people want to share.

    Post it up.
     
  11. No worries! This spells it out really well, easy to follow, and the amounts seem bang on. This is not my creation, but I am adopting it none the less!

    ENJOY!

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    Equipment
    1. A kitchen scale.
    2. Ziplock Big Bags XXL. Available at Wal-Mart.
    3. A steamer or sous vide immersion circulator. This could be a stovetop steamer, rice steamer, roasting pan with a rack for the oven, or a large bamboo steamer. This is for finishing the meat, usually 3 hours. Note the sous vide approach is based on the method in Modernist Cuisine.
    4. An outdoor smoker. I use the 18.5" Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker. Smokers lead to better flavour, but using the oven will do in a pinch, since most MSM these days at deli's isn't wood smoked.
    5. A digital probe thermometer (optional) For inserting into the meat - it's the reliable way to check doneness reliably.
    6. A moderately cold refrigerator with room or a cold room. 38-40F or 3C-4.4C. Try not to go colder than 37F/2.5C.
    Ingredients

    These are hypothetical quantities based on ratios from the initial cut of meat. I'm using the Modernist Cuisine format due to its ease of reading once you know the recipe; details on these ingredients below.

    For the Dry Cure

    Weight - Description - Ratio

    5 kg [11 lb] - Beef Brisket, with fat cap - 100%
    0.2 kg [7.04 oz] - Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt - 4%
    Note: Dry cure salt guideline is 1 lb per 25 lb of meat
    0.0125 kg [0.44 oz] - Curing (pink) salt - 0.25%
    Note: Assuming pink salt is 6.25% nitrate - the guideline is 1 oz per 25 lb of meat
    0.1 kg [3.52 oz] - White Sugar - 2%
    Note: Adjust sugar to taste -- down to 0.6%, up to 2.7%; MSM usually has less sugar than pastrami
    0.03 kg [1.18 oz] - Ground Black Peppercorns - 0.67%
    0.03 kg [1.18 oz] - Ground Coriander Seeds - 0.67%
    0.025 kg [0.88 oz] - Mustard Seeds - 0.5%
    0.01 kg [0.35 oz] - Garlic powder - 0.2%
    0.01 kg [0.35 oz] - Ground Cinnamon - 0.2%
    0.01 kg [0.35 oz] - Fennel Seed - 0.2%
    0.005 kg [0.18 oz] - Ground Cloves - 0.1%
    0.0025 kg [0.09 oz] - Chile Pepper Flakes - 0.05%
    0.0025 kg [0.09 oz] - Ground Bay Leaves - 0.05%

    For the Rub

    Weight - Description - Ratio
    0.36 kg [12.7 oz] - Ground Black Peppercorns - 7.2%
    0.21 kg [7.4 oz] - Ground Coriander Seeds - 4.2%
    Note: Pepper to Coriander ratio is usually 2:1, this one adds a bit more Coriander
    0.1875 kg [6.6 oz] - White Sugar - 3.75%
    Note: Adjust sugar to taste -- down to 0%, up to 7.5%; MSM should have less sugar than pastrami
    0.05 kg [1.76 oz] - Garlic powder - 1%
    0.0325 kg [1.14 oz] - Chile Pepper Flakes- 0.65%

    For Smoking
    1. Charcoal - lump or briquettes, depending on your smoker, enough for 4-5 hours of low heat (250F)
    2. Smoke wood - about 4 to 6 fist-sized chunks of fruit wood (apple/cherry), pecan or maple. Hickory can be mixed in but sparingly (say 2 pieces out of 6). MSM traditionally used maple but in modern times isn't smoked at all. I like pecan.

    For Serving
    1. Rye bread
    2. Mustard
    3. Pickles (optional)
    4. A large sharp knife
    5. A large fork

    Dry Cure Procedure
    1. Trim some fat off the brisket, particularly on sides and top. Leave at least 1/4 to 1/2" of the fat cap on the bottom.
    2. Rub the garlic powder on the brisket.
    3. Combine the kosher salt with the curing salt, being mindful of meat to salt ratios. Rub the brisket with the salt mixture. If there's excess, throw it in the bottom of the ziplock bag.
    4. Grind the remaining dry cure ingredients and mix together in a large bowl. Rub the meat with the dry cure spices. There shouldn't be much excess, but it can go in the ziplock.
    5. Place the brisket in the bottom of the ziplock back, try to ensure any excess that was in the bag is evenly distributed on the meat.
    6. Squeeze the air out of the bag and close the zipper; store the ziplock bag in a cold room or refrigerator, around 38-40F (not super cold).
    7. Overhaul (turn over) the brisket every 12 hours or so, for 7 days. Smaller briskets can take less time (roughly, I'd estimate a 6 lb brisket for 5 days, a 15 lb brisket for 9 days).
    8. After the cure, take the brisket out of the bag, and rinse off the curing spices.
    9. Fill a large sink with water and soak the brisket for 3 hours, changing water every 1/2 hour. Pat the brisket dry with paper towels.

    Rub and Smoke Procedure
    1. Grind the rub ingredients and mix together in a large bowl. Rub the meat with the dry rub.
    2. Optionally, wrap the brisket in ziplock again and let it sit in the dry rub in a fridge or cold room for 6-8 hours. (I skip this sometimes)
    3. Light the smoker with the smoke wood, to 225-250F
    4. Smoke the brisket until it reaches 165F internal temperature - around 4 to 5 hours, depending on the brisket size and temperature of your smoker
    5. Remove from smoker, and either proceed with steaming, or wrap in foil, then ziplock or plastic wrap, and refrigerate until ready to eat

    Steaming and Serving
    1. Carve the fatty (thicker, point end) of the brisket to separate it from the leaner (flat end) meat, and carve again into smaller chunks to fit in your preferred steamer.
    2. If using a stovetop steamer, get the water steaming, and keep on low. Oven roasting pans should be filled with water up to the rack and the oven set to 200F. If using sous-vide, set your immersion circulator for 140F.
    3. Steam for 3 hours, until the brisket is fork tender.
    4. If using sous vide, you have two options. (a) Vaccuum pack your chunk and cook for up to 72 hours. I found this didn't work as well as straight steaming, hence … (b) The modernist cuisine way calls for putting an equal weight of the pastrami brine (water would be fine) in the bag with the pastrami, seal it (this may be difficult with non-chamber sealers), and cooking for 72 hours. I have not personally tried this approach yet.
    5. Once tender, grab the chunk with a large fork, carve brisket chunks against the grain with a sharp knife, serve on rye bread with mustard.

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  12. So, with bloated belly, and nearing a meat coma, here are the photos as promised!

    Also made some beer battered onion rings, and home made double fried fries.



    Served on fresh french loaf, mustard, and kosher dill pickles.

     
    foamheart and david reading like this.
  13. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Lookin Good! Hope you wore the stretch pants or the large sweat pants !!
     
  14. Had company, so jeans were worn... I need maternity pants, holy crap I ate too much! To top it off, just had desert! Braided chocolate/creamcheese puff pastry!
     
  15. susieqz

    susieqz Smoking Fanatic

    what exactly is the difference between montreal smoked  beef n pastrami?

    is it just the cinnamon?

    i've had both, n they are close but not the same, but i don't know how.
     
  16. Kudos.  That is one fine looking sandwich!
     
  17. Man that looks tasty

    Gary
     
  18. disco

    disco Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Terrific looking Montreal Smoked Meat. It is one of my favourites and I haven't made it in a long time. Thanks for the inspiration and great post.

    [​IMG]

    Disco
     
  19. atomicsmoke

    atomicsmoke Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Nice slab of meat.

    Hand sliced (as it MSM should be ...or pastrami).

    Now use those trimmings for smoked meat poutine.

    Great job.
     
  20. Thanks gentlemen! It was worth the time invested from start to finish. Just goes to show, you shouldn't rush a good thing!
     

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