Homemade Pastrami

Homemade Pastrami

It’s been a while since there has been a new post on here, but don’t worry. I’ll have more coming up. We’ve been busy with life things, so fun projects have taken a backseat.

Now, every so often a gadget will come along that fundamentally changes my perspective with projects. With my recent, adding a fancy DeWalt paint sprayer into the mix opened my eyes to how easy and professional the laborious task of painting can be. This time, a cheapo meat slicer magically turned a typical smoked chunk of meat into delicious sandwich chow for days.

Pastrami, brisket, and corned beef are essentially the same lump of cow. Corned beef is typically lower quality and soaked in a brine (salt) forever, waiting for you to dump it in a low heat water bath for eight or so hours. If you were to take it out of the packaging and throw it directly onto a smoker, your mouth would dry up faster than California. Corned beef needs to soak in a clean water bath overnight. Replacing the water a few times throughout will allow as much salt as possible to be osmosisized(?) out and dumped down the drain.

The next morning, it’ll practically beg you to be smothered in spices and smoke. I cover mine in salt, pepper, garlic (SPG), cayenne, and sugar, then toss it on a 225° grill and let it get comfortable with some medium flavor wood - typically a cherry / pecan mix. You’ll want to take it to the same temp as you would a brisket, but I wouldn’t go any higher than 205° internal.

Homemade Pastrami

I grabbed a Chef’s Choice 615A from Amazon and swapped out the blade with a non-serrated option. This thing clearly isn’t a professional restaurant model that could stand up to hundreds of customers a day, but its small footprint is certainly a welcome addition to our kitchen. A quick wash and ignoring of safety procedures later, it was ready to turn the smoked meat cube into heavenly slices of food energy.

This kitchen version of a table saw will surely get some heavy use. There’s a whole freezer full of meat that is in desperate need of slicing. I can hear a turkey roast yelling at me from across the house. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to get that smoker rollin’ while monching on a toasted pastrami sammich.

Homemade Pastrami

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