Easy All in One Day Home Made Pastrami

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a hooligan

Original poster
Dec 24, 2011
Memphis, Tennessee
I start out with a store bought corned beef, one that you have to cook yourself but has already been corned. It doesn’t matter what size as we will be cooking it by temperature. You could go through the trouble and effort to corn your own, but I like easy as well as tasty!  Look for one that is uniform in size as once the pastrami is done you will be slicing it for sandwiches. So a uniformed size makes for nicer looking slices as well as allows the pastrami to cook more evenly.​
Once you have chosen your corned beef the first step is to rinse it off. Clean it using cold water to get all of the gelatin off and then dry with paper towels​
Once the meat is dry apply a  liberal amount of mustard to totally coat the beef. Don’t worry about the pastrami tasting like mustard, you’ll never even know it was on there. I use it to hold the rub on like glue. Remember, mustard is mostly water anyways!​
You are now ready to apply the rub. The rub recipe is easy to blend and has great spices that are very aromatic as well as delicious!​
Pastrami Rub


* 4 tablespoons kosher salt

* 4 tablespoons paprika

* 3 tablespoons coriander seeds

* 3 tablespoons brown sugar

* 2 tablespoons black peppercorns

* 2 tablespoons yellow mustard seeds

* 1 tablespoon white peppercorns

* 8 cloves garlic, minced


Combine coriander seeds, peppercorns and mustard seeds in a spice grinder. Grind coarsely. Add in remaining ingredients and mix well. Rub is now ready to use. It may be stored, refrigerated in an airtight container.

Now we need to coat the beef. Don’t be stingy, really pile it on!


That’s it! it’s now ready for the smoker. You want to preheat your smoker to 225 degrees. Make sure that you have a pan of water under the pastrami. This does two things, it keeps a moist heat so the meat doesn’t dry out and it will also catch the drippings your pastrami will give off.


As you can see I was cooking a brisket along with my pastrami in this picture, but that’ll be another post. The type of wood you choose is totally up to you, but for a more  traditional pastrami I use hickory. I highly suggest that you invest in a good meat thermometer for smoking any types of meat. Under cooked meat can be deadly and over cooked is just nasty. What we are looking for  is the first desired temperature, 160 degrees. Once we hit 160 degrees you need to remove the pastrami and wrap it in foil. The foil allows the  meat to baste in its own juices and will give you moist slices. Reinsert you meat probe and continue cooking until you have an internal temperature of 190 degrees.

Once you hit you final temperature remove from the smoker and let it cool on a cooling rack. Make sure that your cooling rack is placed on a cookie sheet as some juices may leak out. Once is it cool I then will wrap it in a fresh sheet of aluminum foil and refrigerate over night. The reason  for refrigerating over night is to allow it to cool completely so you have easy slicing.There you have it, a perfectly cooked pastrami ready for slicing!


Now I have a meat slicer so the slicing part is real easy. I like my pastrami sliced thin and I am able  to get that with a meat slicer. This doesn’t mean that you can’t slice it with a knife, it’s just harder to get those uniformed thin slices.


For storing I have a vacuum sealer. I can divide the sliced pastrami up and freeze some for later. It’s also just as easy to smoke two at the same time as one. Vacuum seal one for later and freeze, and slice the other to enjoy now.


In the above picture is some of the pastrami that I have vacuumed sealed for later use. I have also taken the extra pastrami rub and put it in a mason jar for later use. And now the fruits of your labor!


Pastrami and turkey sandwich on rye bread with mustard and Swiss cheese then toasted on my pannini press! I hope you enjoy!!
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That looks good,I find it better to soak the CB in cold water to desalt it.

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