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Pastrami gets to 203 degrees... never?

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    Pastrami gets to 203 degrees... never?

    I've attempted a couple of pastramis in my Green Egg, both using Meathead's method (with 4 lb. corned beefs from Costco). Everything went according to plan. Smoked at 225. In both cases, I hit the stall after 4-6 hours. In both cases the meat never really got anywhere near 203. After at least 8 hours, I had to pull them and steam them. They turned out great, but I really wanted them to get to temp in the Egg. Has anyone brought them up to 203 in an Egg and how long does it take?

    Smoke at 275. I mean, think about it, the differential between something like 190F and 225F isn't a lot. A higher temp will mean you're applying more energy to the warm meat and raise the temp faster.

    However, I don't think it matters much if you're steaming them.


    • ahurvitz
      ahurvitz commented
      Editing a comment
      I was trying to follow Meathead's recipe which says 225. I did end up bumping it up to 250 after a bunch of hours. I looked at several recipes and a lot of them say 225. I'll try the next one hotter. Thanks

    Not in an Egg but in the SnS Kamado and all other cookers, yes. I usually take mine anywhere from 197 to 209, then hold it 1-2 hrs, exactly like a brisket,but this takes close to 12 hrs, sometimes over. I don't fret about a specific number, only the human cares about that.


    • ahurvitz
      ahurvitz commented
      Editing a comment
      Those pesky humans. I probably should have figured 12ish hrs. Meathead's recipe seems to suggest 6, but that's not long enough.

    The Big Green Egg has zero to do with it. At 225 degrees it’s not surprising a brisket, even if cured, is not done in 8 hrs. 12-14 hrs would seem more appropriate. I’d bump up the temp to 275.


      225 is pretty low.


        +1 for bumping the temp up to 250-275.


          In my Kamado I do pastrami at 275 also. I cook brisket at 300. At 225 there's so much moisture retained in the cooker that I don't get good bark on either. It takes very little air flow to maintain a kamado at 225. At a higher temp you get a shorter cook and more air flow to get better bark.


            For consistency, Meathead says he suggests 225° in all his recipes. He has said here on the Pit that he often does his cooks at that temp as well.

            There's nothing wrong with bumping the temp to 250-275°, though. I've done a side by side brisket comparison (two different cookers, two different packers) both at 225° and 275°. I prefer the latter, for timesaving reasons and for the fact that I couldn't tell the difference in the end result. Give it a go and see if you like it!



              I don't think I have ever had a thick hunk of meat get to 200°+ in any kind of reasonable amount of time while cooking at 225°. Wrapping once the bark is fully formed does help, though. Wrapping and bumping the heat up, or starting hotter, helps even more.


                Meathead, if I remember this right, developed the book recipes on a Mak 2 star. That makes sense given that a lot of people use pellet grills, but like all pellet grills, the MAK puts out more smoke at lower temps and less (some a lot less) at higher. The problem is that low temps will take longer, sometimes hours longer.

                If you're using a pellet grill you can go low for the first 2-4 hours, them bump it up or start higher and add a smoke tube. BUT if you'd on some variety of charcoal, just bump it up and let it go. Of course, you can also run it at 225 on a pellet the whole way, you just need to plan for a (much) longer cook.


                • ItsAllGoneToTheDogs
                  ItsAllGoneToTheDogs commented
                  Editing a comment
                  He does 225 for recipe consistency as noted above A pellet grill just further ensures that consistency. I ramp up or play with temps on his recipes all the time with usually great success


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