Sunday, March 8, 2015

Roly-Poly Pastrami

Roly-Poly is just another name for FAT. That's right this is a fatty Pastrami and anyone from the east coast knows that the best pastrami contains lots of FAT. In order to make a Roly-Poly pastrami I had to acquire a certain cut of meat. I either had to buy a Navel (Beef Plate) or the point off a brisket. Well, you can't find Navel and you can't buy just the point of a brisket either. I had to buy a full packer Brisket just for the point. This is a lot of meat (15.63 lbs) but not to fear because I plan on using the flat for bacon and or corned beef. The picture in the upper left corner is the full packer. The picture on the right is a simplistic diagram of what a full brisket looks like. The point is a separate muscle and has to carefully removed without scarring it to much.

Breaking down the meat is relatively easy.  all you have to do is follow the fat line and muscles will separate. You will loose about 30-44% of weight due to fat. 

After the muscles are separated you are left with a Flat and the point. Here is a picture of the Point. check out all the beautiful fat.  Link to Instructions on Notes and Cure.

Meat trimmed lightly. I remove thick outer fat layer. It was trimmed down to about 1/4 inch. I mixed together the salt and Cure # 1 and rub it into the brisket making sure I got it into every nook and cranny. To bring out more flavor I heated all the whole spices in skillet briefly then ground them in my spice mill to a med grind. I liberally applied rub all over the meat. The meat is all vacuumed sealed up and will be flipped daily for 12-15 days. 

I used equilibrium curing instead of excess salt curing. Excess salt curing is a technique where you cover the meat entirely in salt. Equilibrium curing is using exact amounts needed for the cure. "This method would be the Sous-Vide cooking of the curing world"Jason 


All Vacuumed Sealed up and will be flipped every day for 14 days. After curing I will rinse the corned beef and apply rub. The Pastrami will be cold smoked for 10 hours. I will Sous-Vide the Pastrami for 36 hours at a 149 degree water temp. After the Sous-Vide I will refrigerate over night (optional) and apply a light rub and Hot smoke again to form a better bark. When I say hot smoke I am talking about 200 degrees or below.

Cured and Rinsed.

Rub applied. I will cold smoke for 10 hours than SV at 149 degrees for 36 hours.

This is what it looked like after the cold smoke. 

After the Sous-Vide bath I plunged in ice bath and refrigerated it over night. 

The following day I applied a Course Black pepper sprinkling and hot smoked at 200 degrees for 2 hours. 

Gratuitous pictures and review below.

Overall it came out great. A whole lot better than the flat. Having the additional fat really helped. Also the 36 hours created a less flaky texture compared to the 48 hours one. If you really like a flaky meat than 48 hours is your magic number. I will try 30 hours next time.

Update 05/09/2017- After trials and misgivings about time and temps I think I have finally nailed down the temps and times. That being said I think I have made well over 250 lbs of Pastrami to reach these new numbers (explains waist line too). Drum roll please... 142 f for 40-44 hours. Ta-da..... The lower temp ( 148 vs 142 f) and the lower time (48 vs max 40-44 hrs) produces a moister better textured Pastrami. Update Cure and Rub HERE and Latest Pastrami HERE.