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pastrami success

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    pastrami success

    hi all,

    just did a real successful (imo) pastrami cook.

    the meat cured for well over a month in the fridge. i had a piece of point and a piece of flat. each sat in its own gallon sized ziplock bag, and i crammed the ziplocks into a large tupperware for some support.

    also, i did not have premixed curing salt, but i did have sodium nitrite. i ended up using about 625mg per gallon, and that seemed to work fine.

    if anyone has some good links (e.g. journal articles) about precise curing guidelines, i'd be interested in seeing 'em.

    i desalinated about 7-8 hours. i just held onto the briskets without removing them from the bags and poured out the curing solution. i then rinsed the briskets in the bags once or twice, filled them with water, and set them in the fridge. didn't even get my hands dirty.

    i also just put the rub on them and cooked them right away. i did not let the rub sit for a couple of days or whatever, and the rub did not seem to have any problems adhering. is the waiting game really necessary? perhaps not!

    it was less than 10F outside last night, and i couldn't motivate myself to set up the smoker... i cooked them in the oven indoors. no smoke flavor, but oh well. next time!

    after tweaking the oven settings a bit, i managed to keep the temperature swings to within around 30 degrees centered about my 225F setpoint (~ 210 - 240 range).

    i placed an aluminum drip pan under the rack and poured some water in there to add a bit of humidity to the cook.

    i cooked both pieces to about 193F. the point took about 10 hours, and the flat took about 13.

    i did not crutch them (wrap them in foil) -- they cooked naked the whole time.

    when they came out of the oven, i wrapped them in foil and then set them in an insulated bag and left them alone for most of the day.

    when i got back, it was dinner time, and i helped myself to some of the point. i did not bother steaming it.
    it was moist and tender as can be. i wonder if steaming it would have even improved it.

    i might try steaming the rest of the point tomorrow (or perhaps some of the flat) to compare, but i'm having a bit of trouble finding the motivation. have you guys tried with and without steaming? is there a big difference? do you think that steaming maybe only makes a big improvement if the brisket comes out of the smoker a bit dry?

    here are pics of the point:

    Last edited by cactus; February 16, 2015, 10:38 PM.

    WTG cactus! Congrats!


      That is some nice looking pastrami!


        Holy shnikes that looks good.


          It looks great but you GOTTA steam the rest. It's worth it!


            Looks fantastic! Nicely done.



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