Pastrami from Scratch -- using -- Pops Brining Method --

Discussion in 'Beef' started by daveomak, Sep 25, 2011.

  1. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I think it was my last batch of Pastrami using a commercial corned beef, I was griping about having to pay XXX $/pound for the brining liquid while purchasing the beef... seemed like a waste of $$ plus I thought making Strami from scratch was no biggee...and I could control all the details..  Well, here it is..

    Pops has been on here with his Approved liquid brine/inject recipe... Since he is really close to "Mr Go To Guy, and highly respected throughout the meat industry and here on the SMF, I succumed to his wisdom and ventured forth...

    1/2 gal water

    4 T CB pepper

    3 T thyme

    6 bay leaves crumpled

    1 tsp ground cloves

    3 heads garlic

    1 1/2 C brown  sugar

    1 1/2 C pickeling salt

    Simmer the above, add the spices and herbs, and cool

    Add 1 1/2 gal cold water and

    2 T cure #1 

    As a note: the spices should have been roasted in a frying pan to bring out the oils and intensified the flavor in a different profile.. Gettin' old...forgot this step..

    I thought it could use more salt... Bride said it was perfect.... It was perfect...[​IMG]

    The meat was weighed down, to keep it submerged, using a zip bag with brine in it.


    Removed from the pickle at day 16... Rinsed thoroughly and patted dry...


    Ground whole fresh spices using a blade coffee grinder... wish I had a burr grinder... maybe in late


    6 T coriander.. from my cilantro plants that went to seed

    4 T tellichery pepper corns

    3 tsp garlic powder... ground from my dried garlic I grow (6 tsp would have been better)

    4 tsp yellow mustard seed

    2 tsp pickeling salt (I figured there was enough salt in the brine.. ended up being right...)

    1/4 C Demerara sugar

    Did not use all the rub.. about 1/4 left.....


    Overnight in the cooler.... Into the highly modified MES 30 on the porch... 

    2 hours at 125 with all vents open... up to 200 for 8 hours using pellets with alder, mesquite and hickory chips on top of the pellets... IT 135... down to 170 for overnight... no foil.. no pan.. top damper open wide and chip drawer pulled out 1 inch to let moisture out....

    The salt in the brine kept the meat moist... along with keeping the temp low... final IT was 163 at 6am...


    Sliced and ready for sammies... Pops your brine/pump recipe is now my standard go to thing..

    Thanks much for your wisdom...

    Bride said the strami was really good... that is all that matters... end of discussion...


    More sandwich meat at an incredibly lower cost than store bought....

    As good as, if not better flavor.... and I know what is in it.... love, patience and help from my

    friends here...  Don't get any better than that...


    Thanks for lookin'... by the way..those bags are from a new supplier.. the bags are  [​IMG]   in my book...

    stovebolt likes this.
  2. solaryellow

    solaryellow Limited Mod Group Lead

    Looks tasty Dave!
  3. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    I love that stuff and you did a great job !!!!
  4. woundedyak

    woundedyak Smoke Blower

    Nice work. Noting better then some good O'L home made lovestrami
  5. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Looks great Dave!!!

  6. danmcg

    danmcg Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Awesome color in that strami................Bet it tasted great
  7. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    "Sliced and ready for sammies... Pops your brine/pump recipe is now my standard go to thing..

    Thanks much for your wisdom...

    Bride said the strami was really good... that is all that matters... end of discussion..."

    As long as she is happy, we're all happy!  Glad you enjoyed it!  Dad would toss all the left over roast beefs (boneless rolled rib, rump and shoulder roasts) into a bucket every Saturday night and corned them in his brine, always had a constant supply of it!  I'm just relaying on all his wisdoms, and so glad I found this forum so that I could before it all would have been lost!
  8. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Great job Dave!  Strami made me hungry.

    Pops, thanks to you, the wisdom of your dad and yourself will live on for generations to come.  But only because you chose to share it.

    Good luck and good smoking.
  9. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Pops, Evening.... So much to learn and so little time... I thank you for sharing the lost art of meat processing through your families eyes... and from the heart... There are many avid listeners waiting for the next episode...
  10. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    That looks awesome and I'll bet it tastes even better [​IMG]     I agree Pops is a wealth of knowledge and we really benefit from his sharing
  11. smokinal

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

    Great job on the pastrami Dave!

    The color looks perfect!
  12. slownlow

    slownlow Smoking Fanatic

    looks awesome.   Nice Job!
  13. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    That All looks Outstanding Dave!!!

    Thanks for showing!

  14. jak757

    jak757 Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    Outstanding Dave!  I've made pastrami using the store bought corned beef -- it was good -- but this has got to be better.  I need to do this!

    Thanks for the post!
  15. moikel

    moikel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Looks great,16 days seems a long soak.Is there a formula you use time to weight?
  16. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I do not have the smarts to figure this stuff out... I rely on the experts... Food and health safety should be left to the experts...

    I either use the USDA guidelines, Wedliny Domowe, Susan Minor, Rytek Kutas or POPS Family recipes that have been approved by meat inspectors and laboratories to insure wholesomeness....

    Here are the guidelines I go by...... There are other threads where pops has been kind enough share his professional recipes...

    • FIXME: needs styling from "post-user-info"
    • Pops6927
    • OTBS, SMF Premier Member, Resident Meathead, Trusted Authority
    • [​IMG]
    • online
    • 1,996 Posts. Joined 7/2008
    • Location: Fort Worth, Tx.
    real simple curing brine:

     for every 1 gallon of water, add:

    1/3 - 1 cup sea salt (depending if you're on a lo-salt diet)

    1 cup granulated sugar or Splenda®

    1 cup brown sugar or Splenda® brown sugar mix

    1 tbsp cure no. 1 pink salt

    stir thoroughly until clear amber color, pour over meat, inject if necessary to cure from inside-out as well as outside-in

    weight down with a partially filled 1 qt or 1 gal. ziploc bag or bags to keep meat immersed

    Curing times vary with meat, but generally overnight to 2-3 days for chickens and turkeys, 8-10 days buckboard bacon, 10-14 days belly bacon, pork shoulder, whole butts, 3-4 weeks whole hams, 10-20 days corned beef (fresh beef roasts, briskets, rolled rib roasts, etc.)   If whole muscle is more than 2" thick, then inject so it can cure i/o as well as o/i, and/or in and around bone structures, etc.

    You can add any other flavorings you'd like, this is just the basic curing brine. 1 heaping tablespoon of cure is about 1 ounce.  The maximum concentration allowed safely is 3.84 ounces per 1 gallon of brine (24 lbs.per 100 gallons: 16 oz. x 24 = 384 ounces, 1/100th is 3.84 ounces).  You can experiment with different concentrations as long as you keep it between those parameters:

    Last edited: Sep 26, 2011
  17. jc1947

    jc1947 Smoking Fanatic

    Awesome looking Pastrami, Dave.

    Mind sharing the bag supplier?     [​IMG]

  18. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

  19. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Not at all.... Simple started the great migration to this new supplier...

    Originally Posted by Lisa Bilotta  [​IMG]

    Thank you so much for the kind words.  I am the owner of Vacuum Sealers Unlimited, and about 95% of our customers are former FoodSaver or Seal a Meal bag users.  We have new discount codes available all of the time for our repeat customers and people who call me from this forum.  Our number is 661-332-5631.

    Thanks again,


    Originally Posted by simple  [​IMG]

    I've been using these folks for my vacuum rolls.  Prices better than buying from WallyWorld or the mfr.  Two different quality levels on the bags.  Never had any problems with bad seals or anything else. Great service, too!
  20. africanmeat

    africanmeat Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Dave this is a nice pastrami nice color too  i love it.Well done my Friend

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