BRADLEY SMOKER | "Taste the Great Outdoors"

Smoking Techniques => Curing => Topic started by: Thompsoncentre on March 30, 2014, 08:47:16 am

Title: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on March 30, 2014, 08:47:16 am
Sory about the silly questions but I have a recipe for a corned beef recipe. Which I'm goin to smoker for pastrami. I bought a cross rib pot roast which isn't a brisket but that's all they had. this may be a silly question but it calles for coarse salt but I just have regular table salt. Is this fine?
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on March 30, 2014, 08:54:15 am
Also I must add the recipe doesn't call or any cure. It does call for saltpetre tho. I kno this method is fine if your stoping at just a corned roast. But will it be fine if I plan on smokimg after?
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: tskeeter on March 30, 2014, 09:15:34 am
There are a couple of issues with using table salt.

First, it is ground a lot finer than something like kosher salt, so you get a lot more salt into every cup.  Using table salt could cause you to over salt the meat.  (Note that there are conversion tables floating around this forum and the internet that will allow you to convert different brands and grinds of salt to a consistent mass.)

Second, table salt typically has iodine added to it, where kosher salt, pickling salt, sea salt, and the like do not.  I remember reading that the iodine will cause meat to taste better.

In regards to your recipe, the saltpetre is the curing agent.  Don't have a clue how to translate saltpetre into something like cure #1, but maybe others can help.

My concern about the possibility of skipping the cure is that you'll be in the 40 - 140 temp zone while making pastrami.  The salt from the pickling will provide some deterrent to bacteria growth, as will smoking.   And you could cold smoke, to keep the temp down.  But, I'm not sure it would be enough to be safe.  There are guys who hang out here that are knowledgeable on food safety and smoking.  Hopefully one of them will be along soon.  You might try re-posting this thread with a subject specifically designed to attract the attention of the folks you want.  Something that helps them understand you are planning to make pastrami from uncured corned beef. 

Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on March 30, 2014, 09:48:40 am
Thanks a lot tskeeter! You make some very valid points about the salt! Since I have no way to get #2 cure anytime soon. Maybe I will just corn in an use it for a corned beef dinner.
But anyone else have any more input would be appreciate.
Thanks again!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on March 30, 2014, 01:27:27 pm
Can you post the brine recipe? I'm assuming you are going to cure this using a wet brine?

 I should be able to covert it to cure #1, and adjust the curing times, for you to use in the future. Saltpetre is not a dependable curing agent. I know people have been using it for ages, but since cure #1 with sodium nitrite has been on the market, that  is more reliable, consistent, and cures much faster than saltpetre.

If you want to go without the saltpeter or cure #1, and if it is a wet brine, you can use a 10% salt solution brine, and that concentration will provide enough salt to retard any harmful microbial growth while smoking/cooking in temperatures in the hot smoke range. A 10% brine is about 1 pound of salt per 1 gallon of liquid. When I make pastrami, I mainly use the cure for color and flavor, since I smoke/cook my pastrami above 200°F. So if you smoke/cook at 200°F or higher, you can use the brine recipe you have without saltpetre. Just note, if you use salt only you cooked pastrami will have a grayish color to it, like you would expect to see in a cooked pot roast, and lack the flavor associated with sodium nitrite.

If your roast is a very thick cut, you may want to inject, or if you don't have an injector you may want to slice it so it is less then 4" thick.

One other thing, sea salts contain many minerals that may have an effect on your finished product. It is better to avoid sea salts, and to stick with non-iodized table salt, canning salt, or Kosher salts.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on March 30, 2014, 01:51:57 pm
Thanks for the reply habs!
This is a recipe my grandfather used when he was alive. So this is why I wanted to use it, but he never smoked afterwards.
3 1/2 gallons water
1 pack pickling spice pack
1tsp saltpetre
1 peeled onion whole
2 1/2 pounds course salt
And it said to leave in bucket for 14 days and it would done.

And I have a cross rib pot roast that's approx 8" long 2 1/2 " thick

Now my bucket that I wanted to do it in won't even hold that much liquid so I kind of wanted to scale,it down but if not I will just get a bigger bucket no big deal.
I have cure here that came in my snack stick kits left over so I'm assuming that's cure #1? So if you could convert it over for me that would be awesome!
Now for cooking I kind of just figured I would put a rub on and then smoke until I got a temp of 162. My smoker will not get over 200 so I can't do it like you.
Anyways any help is highly appreciated and if you would tell me the route you would go that would be awesome!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on March 30, 2014, 02:28:07 pm
I forgot to ask how many pounds it the roast. A general rule of thumb is that the weight of the liquid should be at least 40% - 50% the green weight of the meat, so if you don't need 3.5 gallons, you don't have to make that much. With your size roast, you can use much less.

If you can get your smoker above 180°F, that temperature is safe in a smoker for meats uncured; according to "Home Production of Quality Meat and Sausages" by Marianski

The following link is to my ham recipe. In that recipe it will show you how to calculate the amount of brine you need, and also there is a link to a very good recipe converter:
Smoked Cured Ham (http://www.susanminor.org/forums/showthread.php?465-Smoked-Cured-Ham&p=716#post716)

If you are using saltpetre cure it the length of time in your father's recipe. If in the future you want to use cure #1, for 3.5 gallons I would use 5.25 ounces of cure #1, reduce the salt to 2 pound 3 ounces (though 5 ounces shouldn't matter that much so you also can keep the salt as is). The cure packets that come with a cure mix is generally cure #1, but not always. Can you provide the manufacturer's name of the stick kits.

Converted Recipe
3 1/2 gallons water
1 pack pickling spice pack
5.25 ounces Cure #1 (Prague Powder #1)
1 peeled onion whole
2 1/2 pounds course salt (or reduce salt to 2 pounds 3 ounces)

With the thickness of meat that you have, leave in brine for 3 - 4 days. Each day remove the meat, stir the brine, and reposition the meat in the bucket.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on March 30, 2014, 02:35:40 pm
Wow thanks a lot!  I really appreciate that!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on March 30, 2014, 02:49:50 pm
The cure packets are from high mountion. It's says cure on the pack
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on March 31, 2014, 01:41:17 am
Hi Mountain cure packets is cure #1.

I forgot to mention; I stopped using brisket for my beef pastrami a few years back. It just has gotten too expensive.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: tskeeter on March 31, 2014, 08:32:49 am
Hi Mountain cure packets is cure #1.

I forgot to mention; I stopped using brisket for my beef pastrami a few years back. It just has gotten too expensive.


Habs, I've been wanting to try your pastrami recipe.  What are you using these days instead of brisket?
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on March 31, 2014, 01:05:12 pm
I've been using various cuts from the shoulder. The sirloin cuts don't have enough flavor for me. Of the shoulder cuts I prefer the chuck eye roast, because it usually has a thin line of fat running through it. I trim them into blocks of meat about 2" - 3" thick, and use the trimmings for stir fry, stews, chili, or casseroles.

I've seen a couple of Short Rib Pastrami recipes, and would love to try that cut, but I can't find beef ribs that meaty.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on March 31, 2014, 02:40:41 pm
That's crazy that it goes from 1 teaspoon saltpetre to 5 ounces of cure! That's a big difference in amount.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: tskeeter on March 31, 2014, 02:51:20 pm
That's crazy that it goes from 1 teaspoon saltpetre to 5 ounces of cure! That's a big difference in amount.

The reason for the big change in volume is that cure #1 is about 94% salt and 6.25% sodium nitrite (curing agent).  The salt serves two purposes.  It acts as a carrier for the sodium nitrite.  It would be really hard to get very small quantities of sodium nitrite evenly distributed on the meat you want to cure.  (Also a problem with saltpetre.)  Sodium nitrite evenly blended into curing salt is much easier to get distributed evenly.  And, the salt can be tinted (pink salt) so that it is easily identifiable as a curing agent, rather than common table salt.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on March 31, 2014, 02:55:13 pm
Hmm thanks skeeter! Once again makes sence!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Northern_Hunting_Mom on March 31, 2014, 08:34:35 pm
Saltpetre is a nitrate. Cure #1 uses a nitrite with regular salt to help prevent an overdose. A nitrate is best for long and slow curing, slow as in months like dried sausages that are hung at room temperature. Nitrate slowly converts to nitrite. Saltpetre curing requires a longer curing time than Cure #1 so the nitrate can convert to nitrite and thus be safer to eat. I remember reading that saltpetre (nitrate curing) is best for dry curing that takes months or wet curing that takes 4 weeks or longer. An additional curing agent on top of coarse salt can shorten curing time and adds further bacterial prevention. Due to the shortened curing time and needing less coarse salt, the salty taste can be reduced. Thinner cuts of meat can be cured with just coarse salt and sugar (which has curing properties as well but adding salt greatly helps). Thicker cuts are greatly helped with additional curing agents, injecting helps this too.

Wet curing is different from a brine. It takes almost daily checking of flipping meat and absolutely making sure the meat is completely submerged.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 01, 2014, 02:01:58 am
As mentioned saltpeter is a nitrate; potassium nitrate. Nitrates have no curing properties and must convert to nitrites before any curing can begin. Thus it will take a longer curing time. In your case the 14 days should be sufficient, using it in a wet brine.

Here is a link that explains the difference in the major commercial curing salts. Where measurements are given; those measurements are based on the amounts you use for sausage making.
Curing Salts (http://www.susanminor.org/forums/showthread.php?736-Curing-Salts&p=1126#post1126)

For some great information on brining, the below link just about covers everything:
Making Brine (http://www.meatsandsausages.com/sausage-making/curing/making-brine)
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 01, 2014, 01:02:05 pm
Thanks everyone, that's a lot,of useful info!
So what if I left it in longer then 14 days? I wont be able to smoke it during the week so it will have to be on the weekend so what if I went 21 days? Or when I take it out of the brine how long can I keep in fridge before I smoke?
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 01, 2014, 01:11:00 pm
If you are using the saltpeter, you could brine for 21 days, but the longer you brine the saltier it will become.

If you are using cure #1, you should keep your brining times as close to 3 - 4 days as you can, but if you have to go longer; I would not brine over 10 day; 14 maximum if using cure #1.

The better choice would be to delay the start of the curing process, so that the end of the cure time is much closer to the time you are able to smoke/cook.

Either way you cure, after removing from the brine you should not refrigerate over 7 days before smoke/cooking.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 01, 2014, 01:19:43 pm
Oh really? So I could smoke it this weekend then? I put in brine Monday. So if I smoked Sunday that would be 6 days. And yes I used cure #1
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 02, 2014, 01:55:36 am
With the size and thickness of your cut, your corned beef will be cured in that time. It should only take 3 - 4 days to fully cure, so 6 days it will definitely be cured. If you are unsure, a good indicator (but not foolproof) is that you can test for firmness. The meat should fell like the your thumb pad when you make  a tight fist.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 02, 2014, 12:48:30 pm
Wish you lived closer I would deffinetly be buying you a case of beer!
Thanks for your help!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 02, 2014, 12:59:02 pm
I'm going to use your rub recipe as well. In your instructions it says to get smoker up to 220. I will be surprised if I can get mine to go as high as 200 haha. It's going to be a long smoke! But I'm sure will be worth it. I put a deer roast in as well so it will be cool to ca pare the finish product. I'm taking pictures so hope I can figure out how to post them when all finished.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 02, 2014, 01:17:25 pm
A case of beer!!!!! I wish you lived closer too. :) ;D

If you can get the smoker to 200°F, that shouldn't take too long, or after the smoke has been applied you can finish it in your kitchen oven.

Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 03, 2014, 04:55:39 pm
So I took meat out to stir the bucket, both roasts are 50% grey'ish and 50% red. So I'm assuming there 50% corned!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Grouperman941 on April 03, 2014, 07:17:17 pm
So I took meat out to stir the bucket, both roasts are 50% grey'ish and 50% red. So I'm assuming there 50% corned!

A lot of time, the outside will be gray but the inside is bright red. Won't know until you cut it.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 04, 2014, 01:56:55 am
Grouperman941 is correct about the outside color. I for the longest time also  though you could tell by cutting into the meat, but only learned years later that the color does not set until the meat reaches around 140°F.

Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 04, 2014, 02:30:52 am
Yes that's exactly how it is, the deer roast has a slice down the middle so I can spread it open and the imside is completely red. But it's still got 2 days to go
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 05, 2014, 04:46:14 am
So I'm pulling it out today and putting the rub on and letting sit over night. So if the inside of the roast is still red that's fine correct?
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 05, 2014, 05:10:34 am
Cancell that! I just took out of brine and u can tell there done! Wow they look awesome they almost lost there greyish and it's all a consistent colour! Can't wait for tommarow!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 05, 2014, 12:59:26 pm
So I'm pulling it out today and putting the rub on and letting sit over night. So if the inside of the roast is still red that's fine correct?

Not necessarily! I used to think that if you cut into the meat and it is red, it was fully cured. That is not entirely correct. A few years ago I purchased Marianski's "Home Production of Quality Meats and Sausages". In that book they state the color from the cure does not set until the meat temperature reaches around 140°F.

You shouldn't be concerned, because six days is more than enough time for your cuts of meat to cure.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 05, 2014, 01:53:22 pm
I have your rub recipe on now, there wrapped up in the fridge. Can't wait for tommarow!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 06, 2014, 01:42:17 am
Great! Let us know how the pastrami turns out.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 06, 2014, 01:14:09 pm
Just took out of the oven. Had a small taste before I wrapped in tin foil. Very tasty but very salty.
Be able to give a full taste review tommarow.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: SiFumar on April 06, 2014, 08:24:01 pm
Just took out of the oven. Had a small taste before I wrapped in tin foil. Very tasty but very salty.
Be able to give a full taste review tommarow.

By oven you mean smoker?  I found once when I smoked and wrapped over night one was salty, but after steaming for a few hours the next day, cooling and re-wrapping came out perfect. 
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 07, 2014, 02:27:29 am
I smoked for 4-5 hours then finished in the oven. I'll be able to give a full review tonight when I get home from work
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 07, 2014, 02:12:10 pm
Well all I have to say is wow!!! I can't believe I made it. INCREDIBLE!!!. Habanero if you don't mind, would you PM me your email address I would really like to send you a pic. I'm in the process of making a Ruben sandwich now!
Thanks again everyone. Couldn't of done it without you guys!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: tailfeathers on April 07, 2014, 02:50:25 pm
I wanna see a picture too :'(
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 07, 2014, 05:31:08 pm
Haha well if you wanna give me your email I will send you them too. I just dont no how to post on here. I've tried before wouldn't work for me.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 08, 2014, 01:57:38 am
You are welcome! Your Ruben sandwich sounds great. Glad to see everything turned out all right.

Was it close to the same flavor as your father's corned beef? Did the saltiness mellow out?

I would love to see your finished product. For my email you only need to click on the envelope icon that is just left of this messages.

To post pictures you need to have a host site such as photobucket, where you can link your photos from. I don't know if you have seen the below link to how to post photos. If you don't have a hosting site; it will take you through each step on how to setup a Photobucket account and post pictures on this forum. If you have a hosting site, then just skip down to the part that addresses the information you need.

How to Post Pictures (http://www.susanminor.org/forums/showthread.php?488-Answers-To-Bradley-Smoker-FAQ-s&p=768#post768)
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Caneyscud on April 08, 2014, 10:26:17 am
I wanna see also!  A well turned pastrami always turns my head and makes me salivate.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 08, 2014, 03:35:24 pm
(http://i1081.photobucket.com/albums/j341/thompsoncentre/imagejpg1.jpg) (http://s1081.photobucket.com/user/thompsoncentre/media/imagejpg1.jpg.html)
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 08, 2014, 03:37:03 pm
(http://i1081.photobucket.com/albums/j341/thompsoncentre/imagejpg1-1.jpg) (http://s1081.photobucket.com/user/thompsoncentre/media/imagejpg1-1.jpg.html)
(http://i1081.photobucket.com/albums/j341/thompsoncentre/imagejpg1-2.jpg) (http://s1081.photobucket.com/user/thompsoncentre/media/imagejpg1-2.jpg.html)
(http://i1081.photobucket.com/albums/j341/thompsoncentre/imagejpg1-2.jpg) (http://s1081.photobucket.com/user/thompsoncentre/media/imagejpg1-2.jpg.html)
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 08, 2014, 03:38:11 pm
(http://i1081.photobucket.com/albums/j341/thompsoncentre/imagejpg2.jpg) (http://s1081.photobucket.com/user/thompsoncentre/media/imagejpg2.jpg.html)
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: tailfeathers on April 08, 2014, 05:25:37 pm
Wow that looks great. Another project for my to do list!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 09, 2014, 01:46:26 am
That is some excellent looking corned beef. I'm going to have to start looking for that cut of meat. I've never seen that cut in my area, and when you mentioned it, it was the first time I've heard of that cut.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Thompsoncentre on April 09, 2014, 01:55:54 pm
Well actually that piece I'm showing there is a deer roast.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 10, 2014, 01:33:19 am
Well actually that piece I'm showing there is a deer roast.

That will explain why I never saw that cut before. :)
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: MrCucumber on September 01, 2019, 01:20:30 pm
I found a cool recipe and tried it yesterday, tastes soo good https://club.cooking/articles/how-long-to-cook-corned-beef/ (https://club.cooking/articles/how-long-to-cook-corned-beef/)!
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: dubob on September 04, 2019, 09:50:27 am
I don't know how I missed this thread.  While titled 'Corned Beef', the OP was asking about making pastrami and how to produce his own corned beef.  Corned beef is traditionally made from beef brisket.  But, you can 'corn' just about any red meat and I have had great success corning beef, elk, deer, antelope, ducks, and geese.  Here is a recipe I got from an old timer (that produced some of the best corned duck I've ever eaten.

I would guess that Thompsoncentre has probably figured all this out by now since his original post was made in 2014, But maybe some newer folks will benefit from my recipe.

Quote
Corned Meat

Preparation

Mix all corning solution ingredients listed below in a one-gallon glass jar or stone crock.  Submerge meat in brine and put in a cool place (under 50 degrees F) for 7 - 10 days, dependent on the size of the meat.  I do duck breasts for the 7 days, goose breasts for 8/9, and larger roasts for the full 10.  It's a learning process.   After 7/10 days, remove the meat and rinse.  You can now cook as corned meat (which is great) or make into pastrami (smoke the corned meat - which is even better).

Ingredients

Corning Solution:

1 C Morton’s Tender-Quick
2 T sugar
2 T pickling spices
5 cloves garlic
2 quarts warmish water
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on September 04, 2019, 01:15:49 pm
There is also a recipe using Cure #1 on page 1.
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: dubob on September 04, 2019, 04:56:22 pm
Sorry HS, I didn't bother to read the whole thread since it is 5 years old.  My bad.  The original recipe I got called for prague powder (called cure #1 these days) and salt.  I did some research and converted the recipe to use the Tender-Quick.  Tender Quick contains salt, sugar, both sodium nitrate and sodium nitrite that contribute to development of color and flavor.  It also contains propylene glycol to keep the mixture uniform.

There are probably several recipes available via the Internet for corning meats.  I've used the one I posted to good effect and thought others may want to try their hand at making some corned meat a/o pastrami.   :)
Title: Re: Corned beef
Post by: Habanero Smoker on September 05, 2019, 03:05:22 am
No reason to apologize. My post was in response was to your comment, "I would guess that Thompsoncentre has probably figured all this out by now..."; not towards the recipe you posted.