Homemade Pastrami Recipe

Homemade Pastrami Recipe

Slice thin, pile it on some good dark rye with mustard and Swiss cheese - this homemade pastrami is everything you want and more.

You will need:

  • 4-5 lb Corned beef, flat cut
  • 1 cup Kosmo’s Q Competition Brisket MOP
  • 3 Tbsp Brown sugar, light
  • 1 Tbsp Ground coriander
  • 1 tsp Ground allspice
  • 1/4 cup Black peppercorns, coarse ground

The Prep

First up, let's make the liquid that the corned beef will be seasoned in. Using the Brisket MOP as a base, mix in the brown sugar, ground coriander, and allspice. Mix until the brown sugar is completely dissolved. Then set the liquid aside.

Let's move on to the star of the show: the slab of flat cut corned beef that is going to transform into homemade Pastrami. After removing it from the package it came in, rinse it very well under cold water.

You might hear some recommending letting it soak in cold water for 24 hours after rinsing, changing the water a few times throughout. We've tried skipping this step, and the end product turned out fine.

Place the corned beef in a large enough zip-top bag, and pour in the seasoning liquid mix. Push out as much air as you can, and seal the bag. Place the bag on a tray to prevent any leakage, put it in the fridge overnight, and let the magic happen!

The Cook

About half an hour before you're ready to begin this cook, pull the corned beef out of the bag. Shake off (DON'T rinse!) the excess liquid, then grab your good ol' black pepper and season it on all sides.

Time to start the smoker! Prepare for indirect cooking in the medium heat range, between 300-325ºF (148-162ºC). Add 2-3 chunks of smoke wood about 15 minutes before you're ready to start. A good combination is 2/3 cherry and 1/3 hickory.

Now, with everything in place, put the corned beef on the smoker, and let it soak up that delicious smoke. Use a thermal probe to monitor the temperature in the thickest part of the meat. It should take 2-3 hours to reach 175ºF (80ºC).

Then move the pastrami to a steamer rack in a large non-reactive stockpot. Add about 3 cups of water, and bring it to a boil. Cover, and steam over medium heat until the center of the thickest part reaches 195ºF (90ºC).

Finally, pull the pastrami off the heat. Transfer it to a lipped pan, cover with plastic wrap, and let it cool down.

The Payoff

Your home-cooked pastrami is ready! Slice it thin, pile it on some good dark rye smeared with mustard, add a couple slices of Swiss cheese and warm until the cheese just starts to melt.


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