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Old 12-15-2011, 11:40 AM   #1
SirPorkaLot
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Default How do YOU cure your brisket for Corned beef or Pastrami>

There is a another thread floating about on internal temp & cooking temp for a corned brisket, that I didn't want to hijack, so I started this one, to focus on the curing aspect.

I have in the past mostly done pastrami from commercially cured corned beef, however I have cured my own brisket a time or two using a wet cure, but wasn't as happy as I would have liked to have been with the end result.

I am planning on curing two whole packers next week, and would like to hear your tried & tested curing methods.

Dry cure?
Wet Cure?
Do you use TQ? Pink Salt?
How long do you cure for?
etc.
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Old 12-15-2011, 11:48 AM   #2
bluetang
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For pastrami, a fresh brisket. I boil a gallon of water and dissolve 155g K salt, 108g dextrose, bring off fire, and steep 2 T blk peppercorns, 1 T dried thyme, 6 bay leaves, 1 t garlic juice, 2 t juniper berries. Let cool then chill to 38-40. Add cure #1(175g) and dissolve. Pump meat to 15 % green weight and submerge meat in remaining curing brine for 3-5 days, rinse, add coatings of your choice and smoke.
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Last edited by bluetang; 12-15-2011 at 12:04 PM.. Reason: edit days in brine
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Old 12-15-2011, 12:03 PM   #3
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Hey John... I did a walk through a while back. Take a look here.

Hope that helps.
Cheers
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Old 12-15-2011, 12:18 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluetang View Post
For pastrami, a fresh brisket. I boil a gallon of water and dissolve 155g K salt, 108g dextrose, bring off fire, and steep 2 T blk peppercorns, 1 T dried thyme, 6 bay leaves, 1 t garlic juice, 2 t juniper berries. Let cool then chill to 38-40. Add cure #1(175g) and dissolve. Pump meat to 15 % green weight and submerge meat in remaining curing brine for 3-5 days, rinse, add coatings of your choice and smoke.
Interesting...Pumping the meat to 15% green weight solves the issue I had with wet curing, which was the center of the meat didn't seem to get the cure I wanted.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phrasty View Post
Hey John... I did a walk through a while back. Take a look here.

Hope that helps.
Cheers
As usual your walk through was amazing, very helpful
I have used a very similar brine (wet cure) as to what you used, and cured for a simialr time frame, but when it was all said and done the center didn't take the cure as well as the exterior portion of the meat.
However your photos show a nicely cured piece of meat - so obviously my technique was not "exactly" like yours.

I have used a dry cure on pork belly before and it worked great, as the cure seemed to penetrate better with the curing salt directly on the meats surface as opposed to being suspended in a brine.
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Old 12-15-2011, 12:24 PM   #5
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For home corned beef, I like the method from Old Dave's site. Injecting the brine is the way to go. Dave has mentored me for years and is one of my go-to guys when I need to tickle a recipe or technique. We see eye-to-eye on using a lot of garlic too.

http://olddavespo-farm.blogspot.com/...tramied%20Beef

One side note, I use Dave's FIRST rub, but I prefer a more peppery rub than the one Dave likes for his FINAL RUB (his has some brown sugar in it) when seasoning the corned beef for making pastrami. I use this concoction.

~thirdeye's~ Pastrami Rub

4 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper (more if you like it peppery)
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon granulated garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 teaspoons Canadian/Montreal Steak seasoning
1/2 teaspoon thyme, dried
1 teaspoon paprika
Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Following smoking, I do a variety of finish techniques on my pastrami, my current favorite is a pressure finish. This finish gives me more of a "deli" style of pastrami. The stronger rub works well with this because the
pressure cooker does dilute some of the flavors in the rub, but it keeps it moist, and improves tenderness.

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Old 12-15-2011, 12:42 PM   #6
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Here is my go to pastrami rub:

  • 4 tablespoons kosher salt (more or less depending on salt content and type of cure on meat)
  • 4 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 3 tablespoons ground coriander
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoons ground mustard seed
  • 1 tablespoon ground chipolte pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
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Old 12-15-2011, 12:51 PM   #7
thirdeye
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirPorkaLot View Post
Here is my go to pastrami rub:

  • 4 tablespoons kosher salt (more or less depending on salt content and type of cure on meat)
  • 4 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 3 tablespoons ground coriander
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoons ground mustard seed
  • 1 tablespoon ground chipolte pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
Ooo-oooh, I like the chipolte powder adder. I bet that's a nice zip.
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