Smoked Pastrami From Corned Beef

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Pastrami is a beloved Jewish-American delicacy, particularly when served hot on fresh rye bread.

Pastrami, which originated in Romania, is typically produced from brined, smoked, and steamed beef brisket.

We’re creating smoked Pastrami using Corned beef for this recipe, which is a terrific way to save yourself a few days of prep work while still enjoying amazing pastrami right at home.

What is Corned beef?

Smoked Pastrami From Corned Beef

Corned beef is made from cured brisket that is cooked or steamed. Historically, corned beef was a means of preserving fresh meat to extend its shelf life.

Contrary to common assumption, corned beef was invented in the United States by Irish immigrants, not in Ireland. Because the immigrants couldn’t afford the pig and bacon items that were customarily offered on Saint Patrick’s Day in Ireland, they decided to make a meal out of a less expensive piece of meat: beef brisket.

Because of its distinct pink hue, corned beef may be distinguished from smoked brisket. Curing salt is a salt-nitrite combination used in the brine needed to preserve the brisket and transform it into corned beef. This keeps the beef from rotting as it cures by blocking bacterial development, and sodium nitrite is the same ingredient used to cure sausages, bacon, and hot dogs.

Buying Corned beef vs making your own

Smoked Pastrami From Corned Beef

To make Pastrami you first need corned beef.

You may purchase a brisket flat and brine it for 5-7 days in a combination of salt, sugar, and spices. If you want to learn how to brine your own beef for pastrami, we have another recipe for you.

Place the corned beef in a big plastic container and fill with chilly water. Refrigerate it. After about halfway through, change the water.

After soaking for 24 hours, take the beef from the water, clean it, and pat it dry.

The Pastrami rub

After you’ve taken the salt from the corned beef and patted the brisket dry, it’s time to season it with a fantastic pastrami rub.

Pastrami is famed for its savory rub, which includes a generous amount of black pepper. It is also critical not to season your pastrami rub with salt.

Most barbecue rubs include salt, but since the corned beef has already been brined in a salt solution, you don’t want to add any more salt to the rub or the meat would be much too salty to savor.

Fresh-cracked, coarse-ground black pepper, brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, and smoky paprika make up our handmade pastrami rub. In a small mixing bowl, add all of the ingredients and whisk until thoroughly blended.

Season the meat liberally with the rub mixture to get as much of that delectable, peppery bark that makes pastrami fantastic as possible.

Once the beef is well-seasoned, just leave it on the counter at room temperature while you heat up your smoker to smoking temperature.

How to smoke the Pastrami

As previously stated, the primary distinction between corned beef and pastrami is that pastrami is slow-smoked. This imparts a great smokey taste that elevates it to new heights.

I smoked this pastrami on the Pit Boss Pro 1600 at 250 degrees Fahrenheit.

I chose Bear Mountain Bold BBQ Blend pellets, which are composed entirely of natural Oak, Mesquite, and Hickory. This wood combination provides an extra savory and powerful punch of smokey flavor that works well with a hearty meal like pastrami.

Traditionally, the pastrami is steamed before serving, but I’ve discovered that wrapping it in butcher paper after it reaches roughly 165F achieves the same effect.

Butcher paper produces a humid atmosphere, allowing the pastrami to retain moisture while it cooks. When the interior temperature of your pastrami reaches between 195F and 205F, it is done.

It’s vital to let the beef rest before serving, just as with a regular smoked brisket.

Because this was a tiny piece of brisket, I let it sit at room temperature for approximately an hour to enable all of the liquids in the meat to redistribute.

How to serve Pastrami

Pastrami is traditionally served as a Reuben sandwich with rye bread, Swiss cheese, and deli mustard.

You may serve the pastrami hot or cold, but if you want to have a true New York deli experience, the pastrami must be served hot.

You may also add sauerkraut, coleslaw, or pickles to give some freshness and acidity.

What condiments go best on a Pastrami sandwich?

1. Mustard mustard and pastrami go fantastic together, particularly spicy deli mustard. Even if you’re simply creating a simple sandwich, the mustard provides an acidic accent that brings the pastrami’s tastes to life.

2. Russian Dressing (also known as Thousand Island Dressing) Russian dressing is another favorite condiment for pastrami. To prepare a Reuben sandwich, spread some Russian dressing on each piece of rye bread, then stack on some Swiss cheese, pastrami, and sauerkraut. To obtain a similar taste profile, use Thousand Island dressing for Russian dressing.

3. Mayonnaise mayonnaise is a common condiment for a delicious pastrami sandwich. It may be spread in a layer over the bread to provide taste while also helping to keep the sandwich together!

Try some of our other sandwich recipes

Nashville Sandwich with hot chickenSandwich with cheesy tri-tip steakReuben sandwich with smoked turkey from scratch Pastrami


How to smoke a corned beef to make pastrami?

Preheat smoker to 275°F and add 4 cup pastrami rub. Smoke the beef for 6 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 190°F. Remove the pastrami from the smoker, tent with foil, and set aside for 30 minutes before slicing.liberally coat corned beef with 1

Is pastrami just smoked corned beef?

The primary distinction between corned beef and pastrami is how they are chopped and prepared. In addition, corned beef is boiled after cutting and curing, while pastrami is smoked and steamed. Whether you like Corned Beef or Pastrami, the Brent’s Deli menu has a wide variety of options for you.

How long to desalinate corned beef for pastrami?

Remove the corned beef from its container and rinse it under cold water. Fill a large stockpot halfway with cold water. Refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours to eliminate excess salt. This is how the desalination process works.

Do you use corned beef for pastrami?

To create Pastrami, you must first prepare corned meat. We began with a 4lb corned beef flat from the grocery store for our dish. You may purchase a brisket flat and brine it for 5-7 days in a combination of salt, sugar, and spices.

Do I need to soak corned beef before smoking?

If you want to smoke it, soak it in water for at least two hours and up to eight hours. This procedure will aid in the removal of some of the salt. If you don’t have time to soak the corned beef, at the very least rinse it well. It will wash away some of the salt from the meat’s surface.

Do you smoke pastrami fat side up or down?

Our Suggestion. It is advisable to keep the food smoker closed for the time and choose either the fat side up or down. If you choose the fat side up, you may get a more sensitive result. You can keep the taste you rubbed on the surface if you choose the fat side down.

Are Reubens made with pastrami or corned beef?

A Reuben sandwich is constructed with corned beef, sauerkraut, and Russian or Thousand Island dressing and is often served on marble or normal rye bread. It would also be delicious with pastrami, but it wouldn’t be a typical reuben! Bottom line: Neither of these flavor-packed meats can go wrong.

Is corned beef the same as pastrami for Reubens?

Pastrami is usually smoked, while corned beef is usually steamed or boiled. They share a similar taste profile, however pastrami is a touch richer with a smokey flavor, while corned beef is leaner and drier (in a good way).

What is the best cut of meat for pastrami?

While any piece of beef brisket may be used to make pastrami, experts will tell you that the genuine thing comes from the navel end. The brisket’s navel is especially fatty and will hold up well to the extended cooking ahead; reserve the remainder of the brisket for corned beef.

What happens if you don t rinse corned beef before cooking?

1. Failure to rinse the meat before cooking. If you cook the meat directly from the plastic packing or without washing it from the brine solution in the fridge, you may be in for a saltier lunch than you paid for.


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