New York City on a budget: make your own Katz's inspired pastrami recipe

New York City on a budget: make your own Katz's inspired pastrami recipe

After trying this, you will definitely say ‘I’ll have what she’s having!’

You can now have this classic, worldwide famous, delicious and incredible pastrami at home. Save big bucks and make it yourself. Here’s how:


•    1 (3 - 4 lb.) corned beef brisket, uncooked (mine was 3.33 lbs.), *trim fat side down to only 1/8" thick of fat
•    4 Tbl. coarse ground black pepper
•    2 Tbl. ground coriander powder
•    1 Tbl. brown sugar
•    1 Tbl. paprika
•    2 tsp. garlic powder
•    2 tsp. onion powder
•    1 tsp. ground mustard powder

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Two days before you're ready to smoke the brisket, place the (trimmed) corned beef into a large stockpot of cold water and pop into the fridge to draw out all that excess salt they cure it with. (*You must do this or it will be too salty in the end).

The next day (day #2), in small to medium-sized bowl, combine well all of the spices. Remove the corned beef from the water and place the meat side-up onto a baking sheet. Coat meaty side and sides with a thick layer of the spice mixture using about half of it. Place onto sprayed smoker rack that has been placed onto another (clean) baking sheet, placing brisket meaty side-down. Coat top and spots missed with rest of rub mixture patting on thickly. Refrigerate overnight, uncovered. (Don't worry, it won't dry out).

The day of smoking (day #3): Fill smoker bin with wood chips, prepping if needed according to your smoker. Add water to the water pan, or as per your smoker's directions, and preheat to 225º F. Let prepared corned beef sit out at room temperature while the smoker is heating up. *If yours comes with a meat thermometer, insert the probe into the thickest part of meat on the end of brisket nearest to the side of smoker where you'll plug it in. Or just make sure it will reach.

See also: Make your own Cheesecake Factory cheesecake for a fraction of the price

When the smoker is heated, quickly place prepared corned beef already on smoker rack, (fat side-up just as you already have it) into the smoker, plug-in thermometer, close door, program smoker, and smoke until internal temperature of brisket reaches 190º F.

When internal temp is reached, remove from smoker, place brisket onto a sheet of foil, wrap - but don't disturb the seasoning on sides and top, and cool completely in the fridge overnight.

Steam when ready to serve, (day #4): Place pastrami on a steamer rack, or metal wire rack, above simmering water in a large pan on the stovetop making sure the meat isn't touching the water. Cover with a lid or foil, and steam for 1 1/2 - 2 hours (depending on size of brisket) over low heat, slowly, until internal temp reaches 200 - 203º F. *Add water if needed during steaming. Do not let all of the water evaporate.

Slice against the grain into thin slices, about 1/8" thick is all. (Don't try to put this on a slicer, it will just fall apart). Serve, piled high, on rye bread, with good spicy brown mustard, and a little cream cheese or swiss (or other cheese of choice), if preferred. Serve with lots of napkins and ice cold beers!

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