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ultimate montreal smoked meat recipe



  • horseflesh
    In another thread I found advice to cook til IT of 160 F, which is what I tried. Also, this page suggests IT of 150 F: 


    Not sure which is best but I'm committed to 160 F now, the smoke step was last night and it's steaming right now. 

    Based on feedback in the other thread, I also soaked longer than 3 hours. It was more like 7, with changes every 30 minutes at first, and every hour towards the end. The post-smoke sample seemed to have about the right amount of saltiness. 

    As to steaming, I think I found a good method to handle the whole brisket. A restaurant steam table tub, 6" deep, is easily big enough to swallow a 15 lb brisket. 


    You'll need some kind of rack, and if it doesn't have tall enough legs to keep the meat out of the water, I guess you can prop it up with foil balls, ceramic ramekins, etc. I happened to have just the right kind of rack, which I think I got from a restaurant supply store, though I can't remember who made it. 

    I got a domed lid for the tub but it doesn't seal very well. After an hour in the oven I pulled the tub out and added a layer of foil for a better steam seal. Honestly I think foil alone is fine and I doubt the lid is helping. (Note you'll need an extra-wide foil roll if you don't want a foil seam on top of the vessel.)

    Lastly, a heavy tub full of steaming water with a thin lip and no handles is kind of hazardous to move around. I think it is smart to put it on a tray, and use the tray to move it around when it's hot. Because the tub is huge a normal cookie sheet or even a quarter sheet pan will not work. You need a "2/3" AKA "3/4" sheet pan, which is 21" wide. A full sheet pan is 26" wide and probably won't fit in your oven. 

    Here are some pics:


    This would also be a good way to steam-reheat king crab legs, which are always awkward to handle. 

    Hope this helps someone!
  • Rocksteady
    Rocksteady Posts: 10
    I just picked up The Mile End cookbook, I’m a Montreal and so is the author, I know this recipe is the real deal and the closest I’ll get to making Schwartz's smoke meat at home.

    Couple of things I didn’t like about his recipe was that the author said to use 4 pounds of oak wood chips soaked.

    The whole soaking thing has been debunked so I’m surprised to see him mention it, why chips instead of chunks, and 4 pounds seems very excessive.

    Can anyone clarify how much of chunks I should use, and he specifically calls for Oak, I can order Oak but are there substitutes that I can use that will be exactly the same? I’m fine ordering it if I have to but it would be good to know if there are alternatives I can use that will give the exact taste.

    I will be cooking this on a Kamado Joe Big.
  • Daddyshack
    Daddyshack Posts: 179
    Seems similar to pastrami and i am excited to try. Can you describe some of the differences?