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Old 10-14-2004, 05:18 PM   #1
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My Homemade Pastrami Recipe

Pastrami is very spicy, lightly smoked corned beef. I first became familiar with pastrami circa 1970 at a Jewish restaurant called Flo's on Cermak Rd. half a block east of State St. in Chicago, IL. It was served alone on rye bread. Today, I can't get real pastrami. The stuff sold at supermarkets is expensive, tastless crap. So, I decided to make my own pastrami. I developed this from recipes that I found on the web. I do not smoke it, but you can after it is cooked.

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10 lbs corned beef brisket
6 tbs pepper
3 tbs coriander
12 bay leaves
1 tbs red pepper
1 tbs minced garlic
Optional:
1 c juniper berries or 5 drops juniper berry essential oil

I cover the corned beef with just enough water to cover. I bring to a boil and then set at the lowest flame setting on my stove. Then I add the spices to the water, cover and simmer for 6 hrs. Notice that the lid on my pot has a depression in it. I pour water into that depression to keep the lid cool so that most of the spice vapors and steam condense and drip back into the pot.

After letting the briskets cool in the brew, I rub off the outer fat with my hand and put the brisket in plastic bags. (I flush the spice sludge down the toilet.) When I want a sandwich, I put slices on a paper towel and microwave.

Regarding juniper berries, this is not a traditional pastrami flavoring, but now I am addicted to it. Juniper berries taste like pine needles.
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Old 10-14-2004, 07:39 PM   #2
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I continue to be impressed by the quality of your photography, aruz. do you do this professionally?
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Old 10-15-2004, 10:25 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mudbug
I continue to be impressed by the quality of your photography, aruz. do you do this professionally?
Hardly, I use a relatively inexpensive point and shoot digital camera, whereas professional photographers use digital SLRs costing over three times as much. However, I do author and sell image processing software.
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Old 10-15-2004, 10:31 AM   #4
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man, aruz, that sandwich looks awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i can almost smell it... btw, whaddya mean you can't get real pastrami?
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Old 10-15-2004, 11:05 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by buckytom
man, aruz, that sandwich looks awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i can almost smell it... btw, whaddya mean you can't get real pastrami?
I mean that the pastrami sold in supermarkets has changed over the years. Modern pastrami is leaner and less tasty than old fashioned pastrami. As recently as maybe 5 years ago, Vienna Sausage Company made good pastrami, but now it is as tastless as other brands.

I heard comedian Jackie Mason talk on TV about a Chicago restaurant that sells good pastrami sandwiches (and I trust him on this), but I don't know where they get it. Maybe, some Jewish delicatessens sell it, but the closest is about 10 miles from my house.
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Old 10-15-2004, 02:16 PM   #6
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So how would you smoke it?

That sounds awesome. What would you recommend if one wanted to smoke it? Perform the steps as written then smoke some more, or would you perhaps boil a soak ( I notice there's no salt in your recipe) with those spices and let the corned beef soak in it overnight to be smoked the next day?
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Old 10-15-2004, 02:26 PM   #7
 
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Real pastrami on rye with swiss, and some spicy mustard! To die for!
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Old 10-15-2004, 02:29 PM   #8
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a good reuben is a gift from god.....
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Old 10-15-2004, 02:47 PM   #9
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I made some corned beef last night and just made myself a Reuben for lunch - rye, thousand island, swiss, saurkraut, corned beef, grilled - except my son came in and ate the other half LOL

Nice pic aruzinsky, thanks for the recipe too!
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Old 10-15-2004, 02:49 PM   #10
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beerco - I've heard of smoking a brisket - before it is corned - but I've never heard of smoking pastrami? But I don't get out much :oops: so hopefully someone can help with that.
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