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Instacure Question

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hi There,


I knew at smoking and curing.  Big reason why I wanted to start was to make my very own Montreal smoked meat which is just mind blowing yummy.  I've gotten a recipe and decided to give it a go but I'm skeptical of the amount of instacure that they recommend and I want to be sure before serving it to any one.


Here is the recipe and please let me know your thoughts.


This recipe is lengthy but not difficult. It takes two weeks to make. Stick through it and you'll get a final at-home product that's on par with Schwartz's, Smoke Meat Pete or any other of the holy smoke meat temples you'll find on the island of Montreal. Really- it's that good.

Didn't make up the recipe: I'm just spreading the gospel.


Cure a 12 lb double-brisket (fat-cap on) by adding the following spice mixture generously to both sides:

1/2 c Readycure (1% nitrate) + 1/4 c kosher salt OR 4 tb instacure (6% nitrate "pink salt") + 1.5 c kosher salt
1/2 lb cracked black pepper
1/4 lb sugar
1/4 lb cracked coriander
3 tb bay leaf powder
3 tb cloves

Place brisket in an XXL ziploc bag and let cure for 10 days in the fridge, flipping the brisket twice daily.

On day 11, thoroughly rinse off the cure and then soak in cold for at least 3 hours, changing the water every half-hour to get out most of the salt. Dry. Cover top of brisket with 2:1 mixture of cracked pepper to cracked coriander seed. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

On day 12, smoke over maple chunks for 4 hours at 250. After 4 hours, completely foil the brisket and return to smoker (or oven) to cook for another 5 hours. At this point the smoke meat will be fantastic, but not 100% tender. Resist eating it now. Let come to room temperature and refrigerate overnight.

On day 13, gently steam the brisket for 3 hours just prior to service. Odds are that you won't have a steamer big enough- I improvised by putting water in a foil turkey roasting pan, throwing a baking rack on top and then covering it with a second pan.

To carve, cut against the grain and on the bias very thinly, using a VERY SHARP slicing knife (the knife actually makes a difference). Serve stacked on fresh seeded rye bread with mustard.



post #2 of 5

Kevin, it sounds like pastrami to me. In the USA, Instacure or Cure #1 contains 6.25% Sodium Nitrite (not Nitrate) and I guess the 1% and 6% relate to Canadian cures?.

For a 12 lb. brisket you would need 13.6 grams of Cure #1 . I would use 96 grams of salt (2% - incl. salt in cure) and  54 grams of sugar (1%).

The measures in your recipe appear high and I would wait until someone more knowledgeable than me responds.

In the interim you could use the Search feature and look up Pastrami.

Good luck with your project and remember to post pictures so we can drool. Pete.

post #3 of 5

I agree with Pete, if you use the bacon calculator you come up with Pete's numbers.


Your instacure must be very different than ours in the states, because you would use 1 tsp per 5 lbs. of meat here. 4 tablespoons seems way too high for 12 lbs.


BTW, since this is your first post would you swing by Roll call & introduce yourself so we can all give you a proper welcome.



post #4 of 5

1/2 c Readycure (1% nitrate) + 1/4 c kosher salt OR 4 tb instacure (6% nitrate "pink salt") + 1.5 c kosher salt


My friends are correct....  That recipe is NOT a good recipe....  4 TBS instacure is enough for 60 #'s of meat...    1/2 cup salt (Ready Cure) = 5 oz. (142 gms.)..     12# brisket = 5448 gms.   That's 3.8% salt which is a little high for most folks...


If you are using Readycure, use 82 grams...  instacure use 13.6 grams....   (110 gms. salt - 81 = 30 additional gms. salt using ready cure)...(110 - 12.7 = 97 gms. additional salt using instacure).....  use all the other stuff......


I would rub in the ingredients and zip bag for 2 weeks while refrigerated......  rinse and then follow the instructions....

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks gentlemen your input is much appreciated.

Cheers :-)

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