How long can you brine corned beef nitrate/nitrite/saltpeter free without it going bad?

Discussion in 'Beef' started by dabaxter, Jan 4, 2012.

  1. dabaxter

    dabaxter Newbie

    I had plans to make nitrate/nitrite/saltpeter free corned beef and pastrami with a recipe similar to this:

    After brining for a week, i took out the first brisket and put it in the crockpot with spices. It had very little corned beef flavor. So I left the other brisket in brine, with hopes of making pastrami, and it has been in the fridge for a few more weeks. Time has gotten away from me with the holidays. After how many weeks would you say throw it out?
  2. tigerregis

    tigerregis Meat Mopper

    Whiskey tango foxtrot!  You want cured beef without a cure. You may as well want a sailboat without sails. Why do you want to make something that you don't want?
  3. dabaxter

    dabaxter Newbie

    Nitrates and nitrites are toxins and must be avoided in our house.
  4. tigerregis

    tigerregis Meat Mopper

    Do you eat celery?
  5. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    WOW! Can't wait to see the comments on this.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2012
  6. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member


    Is there a medical condition in your home that prevents consumption of all nitrates and nitrates.  Meaning you avoid  store bought ham, bacon, some fresh vegetables?

    Without a cure you will have salted pork or salted beef no matter what else you do to it.  I would be leary of the meat you currently have in brine
  7. tigerregis

    tigerregis Meat Mopper

    Thank you alblancher. You are more patient than I. There is a modern desire to dumb down accepted nomenclature in all pursuits, as if it there were a conspiracy to exclude new people. This site is a paragon of open-armed help to the newly interested in smoking. I am a former advertising guy and a trained meat cutter. The misuse of terms drives me nuts. I sincerely hope Mr Baxter will inquire for more information.
  8. How can you corn something without nitrites. Isn't that the definition? I'm with Craig on this one. That Jun guy needs to take some cooking classes I think.
  9. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  10. tigerregis

    tigerregis Meat Mopper

    Thanks Dave, wasn't there a nitroglycerine pill that went under the tongue to alleviate some heart trouble?
  11. dabaxter

    dabaxter Newbie

  12. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member


    My question is. Is it safe to leave beef in a brine without cure for that long and eat it????? I know it's at a safe temp but I'm questioning the length of time it's in the refrig. 
  13. I would think with a high enough salt concentration it wouldn't spoil but it ain't cured either.
  14. nepas

    nepas Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  15. Have you ever used that Rick? It seems like it doesn't take much so the salt content in the final product would be much lower than other cures.
  16. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Yes, for sure.... also a guy I worked with... in his previous job, worked at DuPont making dynamite using Nitroglycerin.... He said no one ever died of a heart attack there....??? He also said every weekend he would end up with a headache from nitro withdrawal (arterial constriction).....  Maybe they died from acute pressure buildup during explosions or something ???  I don't know squat... all I know is the scientists can find a reason "everything is good for you" in one way or another.....  I think there is a balance ..... also they find "everything is bad for you" in one way or another....   I'm getting to the point,  "they write a paper on whatever and whoever pays the most money".....  Maybe I'm getting cynical... do you think??? [​IMG]   [​IMG]
  17. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    I have reviewed a couple of articles on Nitrite Free Corning and all indication are that it can be done successfully...Pickles go into Salt water for 4 weeks and are eaten raw right out of the barrel and it is a lot more likely that they have been contaminated with a soil borne bacteria like Clostridium Botulinum than a hunk of beef. The same thing applies here. If the recipe was followed there should be a 5.9% salt solution and that should keep most nastiness at bay for a few weeks... If there is no black mold floating in the brine, bubbling and gas blowing up the bag or foul odor...there should be nothing wrong or bad...Hot Smoke it to the desired temp above 165*F...Without the cure the taste and color will be different it will not be pink or have that hammy tang...JJ
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2012
  18. scooper

    scooper Smoking Fanatic

  19. I was wondering that too. Probably drug induced.

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