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Another Pastrami Question

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    Another Pastrami Question

    I know Meathead's recipe calls for leaving the rubbed meat uncovered in the fridge for "at least 2 days" before smoking. Do folks here really do that? Or has anybody smoked it sooner and what was the result?

    Thanks.

    #2
    I usually do 2-3 days. I’d assume if we smoke earlier, the results would be similar to a shorter dry brine period where the spices would have less time to penetrate the meat. It’s probably not hugely impactful to the end result considering all other variables so if you can’t make it work this time, I wouldn’t consider it a big deal.

    Comment


    • Dewesq55
      Dewesq55 commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks. I can probably make it work. I was just wondering if I had to wait.

    • efincoop
      efincoop commented
      Editing a comment
      Same here.

    • DogFaced PonySoldier
      DogFaced PonySoldier commented
      Editing a comment
      It's just to set the rub. If you don't, you're more likely to have a softer bark. The spices don't penetrate, they only are part of the bark.

    #3
    I've never planned that far ahead and only had time for about 1 day, and it's always turned out fine.

    Comment


      #4
      I usually just leave it overnight and I'm happy with the results, as STEbbq says, it's probably minimal difference

      Comment


        #5
        I've always smoked it after I rinse off the cure and apply the rub. The rub doesnt penetrate really anyway so I don't really get the point of a 2 day time uncovered. Or rather I don't understand the general advice that smoke adheres best to cold wet meat and then letting the pastrami dry out for 2 days.

        Comment


          #6
          I've done it both ways. I think the rub stuck better to the meat after the 2 day rest but don't think the difference was all that significant that it would greatly change my plans. If I had two days, I would wait, and if I was only able to add rub and then immediately smoke I wouldn't hesitate

          Comment


            #7
            I’ve done it both ways. The point of letting sit for two days has nothing to do with the spices penetrating. Here’s Meathead’s explanation copied from his pastrami recipe.

            "Rub. Make the rub. Rinse the meat, and while it is damp, apply the rub liberally, about 4 tablespoons per square foot of surface, and press it into the surface to help it adhere. If there is a thin part of meat, use less rub. Put in the fridge for a minimum of 2 days. Don't wrap it. The rub just sticks to the plastic wrap. Normally I say you do not need to let meats marinate in a rub, but the wait seems to help this particular rub adhere."

            I’ve found the extra time makes a definite difference in how well the rub adheres. It’ll still come out fine though if you just put the rub on right before smoking.

            Comment


              #8
              Leaving g it in the fridge makes it adhere to the meat better. I finish mine by steaming. If I don't wire rack it and let it sit with rub on the meat for 2 days or more, it has a tendency to get mushy and smear off.

              Comment


              #9
              It does let the bark set up better and adhere to the surface of the meat. I always spray the meat down before throwing it on the smoker to make sure the surface his wet and cold, better smoke adhesion.

              It is not totally crucial though.

              Comment


              • texastweeter
                texastweeter commented
                Editing a comment
                Never been a spritzer of anything I cook, or a moper for that matter. Past couple years, I have thought about running an side by side experiment. I'm sure it has been done here before, do you know where that is? My searching skill is a -9.

              #10
              I could swear the original recipe actually had you put the rub on and let it sit for 5-7 days. When I first started doing pastrami, which has been at least ten years ago, it was always a two week process. One week (ish) to cure the brisket (making corned beef), and then soak for a day, and then apply pastrami rub and go another week. But this was also before the recipe called for steaming the meat to finish it off - you just smoked it to probe tender.

              Or I'm getting old and making stuff up. Maybe Meathead remembers? Anyways, I've always found that at least several days with the rub does improve the flavor, though I usually had the meat in a covered container.

              Comment


              • Meathead
                Meathead commented
                Editing a comment
                The 5-7 day thing was to cure the brisket and make it into corned beef. Then the rub went on anytime before smoking. he recipe hasn't changed much.

              • Joey877
                Joey877 commented
                Editing a comment
                That means I'm getting old and losing my memory. I suspected as much...

              • shify
                shify commented
                Editing a comment
                Joey877 - give it 5-7 days and see if your recollection changes!

              #11
              I have done it both ways, and found that the 2 days rest with the rub on did make for a slightly better end result. But if I haven't planned things out that far in advance, then I have no qualms about going right from rub to smoker. either way still makes a great pastrami.

              Comment


                #12
                I love pastrami. Got a big surprise pastrami cure in the bucket for smoking this weekend. Pics to follow, but in the meantime get you some of that......

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                Comment


                • texastweeter
                  texastweeter commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I think the most impressive pastrami you ever posted were the beef rib pastrami pics. If memory serves me, you said they were a dud though due to too much fat. Is MY memory correct? I always dry cure my pastrami, desalinate, rub, smoke, steam.

                • Troutman
                  Troutman commented
                  Editing a comment
                  As a matter of fact I’m in the process of SVQ some big bronto ribs I just got done corning. Should be Pastrami sometime next week. The only thing that happened on the last batch I made was they got a little dry. By using sous vide I’m hoping to avoid that this time.

                #13
                Looks good troutman!

                I'm making some myself. A few questions if I may so I don't have to start a new thread:

                Can I dry brine in a cryovac bag like Kenji does for his corned beef?

                Some recipes call for cooking (either sous vide or boiling) the corned beef before smoking (like what Babish does). I also see many skipping that step. Is there a difference?

                Being in Canada, I'm using Redicure instead of Pink Salt (Prague powder #1). When converting I just calculate the total nitrate
                In this case two tsp which is 6g per tsp or 12g. and is 6/25% nitrate, so 0.75g total nitrate. Redicure is 1% so I would need 75 grams of it. Then the total salt is 8 oz (or 227g) plus the 12g of Prague powder or 239g total. So I would then add 239g - 75g or 164g of additional kosher salt.

                I'm going to carve my full packer brisket into a few pieces and try some different techniques. I will post what I end up with.

                Comment


                  #14
                  For those who don't take it all the way to 203 in the smoker (which took me 12 hours yesterday!) has anyone tried doing the steaming/tenderizing step in an instant pot? I would think that 40-45 minutes in the IP would be perfect.

                  Comment


                  • texastweeter
                    texastweeter commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I use a Holland grill for the steaming process. Never used an instant pot.

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