Andy Anderson !
In a sense, we’re taking a brisket, converting it into a corned beef, and then taking that and converting it into pastrami. The process takes days; however, your participation is minimal: Brine, Rub, Smoke, Steam, Eat.
So, you ready, let’s get into the kitchen.
4 lb4 pound beef brisket navel end, trim the fat down to about 1/4 inch
1 galfiltered water
6 clovegarlic, peeled and smashed
1/4 cgin (if you don’t have any gin substitute 5 juniper berries)
3 mediumfresh bay leaves, torn into pieces
3/4 csalt, kosher variety
1/2 ccup brown sugar, packed
2 Tbspcuring salt
1 Tbspwhole black peppercorns, smashed
6allspice berries, smashed
3 Tbspcoarsely ground black pepper
3 Tbspcoriander seeds
1 1/2 Tbspyellow mustard seeds
2 mediumdried bay leaves, whole
1/4 cbrown sugar, packed
2 Tbspsweet paprika
1 Tbspsalt, kosher variety
1/2 tspground cinnamon
1/2 tspground clove
How to Make Homemade Pastrami
- Put the filtered water into a large non-reactive stockpot and bring to the boil.
- Add the brining ingredients.
- Stir for about 5 minutes (make sure all the sugars and salts have completely dissolved).
- Remove from heat, and allow the brine to cool to room temperature.
- Chef’s Note: You will need a non-reactive container to hold the brisket and the liquid… the stockpot will do fine, but make sure that it is a non-reactive stockpot. Personally, I prefer something glass. I don’t like anything plastic, because chemicals can leach out of the plastic over the long soaking time.
- Add the brisket to the liquid and immerse it completely in the brine.
- Place in the refrigerator and wait for three days... four or five, if you have the patience.
- Add the pepper, coriander seeds, mustard seeds, and the bay leaves to a mortar & pestle, and coarsely grind. Or, you could use a spice grinder.
- Add the brown sugar, paprika, salt, cinnamon, and clove, and thoroughly combine.
- Remove the brisket from the brine, rinse, and pat dry.
- Thoroughly, cover the brisket with the spice rub
- Place the brisket (unwrapped) in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
- Remove from the refrigerator.
- Allow it to sit out for about an hour, this will take the chill off.
- Prepare your smoker, and set the temperature to 220f - 225f (104c – 107c).
- Smoke the brisket, until the internal temperature reaches 190f to 200f (87c to 93c).
- Remove from the smoker, cover with a piece of parchment paper, and then tightly wrap in aluminum foil.
- Place in the refrigerator for 12 hours, or overnight.
- Remove from the fridge and steam the meat for about an hour, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 205f (96c).
- Chef’s Tip: It’s important to the tenderizing process to get the meat all the way to 205f (96c).
- Remove from the steamer, and slice thinly perpendicular to the grain of the meat.