Ollie is all about helping Mrs J with her sewing.He provides invaluable feedback on the kitteh beds she assembles. I think the one he is test driving now is shrouded for secrecy. The cat bed manufacturers are always on the look-out for new designs.Made some fried rice for dinner the other day. Those dumplings are from frozen and are pretty bad. I’ll drop a photo here in case I forget the brand name. Bad tasting, and the portions are so small! LOLHere’s another shelter kitteh. I’m told that 90% of these ginger kittehs are males but this one is a girl. Staff have named her Tina Turner – Mrs J says it was just Turner until they discovered on the operating table that the neutering procedure they had planned was inappropriate. Here is one of those beef roasts that was on sale last month. I dry brined this one and vac sealed it, it spent the month in the fridge. Yesterday I rinsed it off and gave it a dry rub prior to placing it into the smoker.Pastrami! I left it in the smoker for 8 hours, then brought it into the house, covered it with foil, and placed it into a 200 degree oven where it stayed all night. Here it is this morning, it started to come apart when I transferred it into this hotel pan. I covered it with foil and it’ll spend time back in the fridge to firm up for slicing.This is Flip, a 10 month old male. Both Flip and Tina Turner are up on their shots and are ready to go home.
Here’s a nice reuben sammich on rye that was made in our bread machine. It’s a fairly simple recipe that works very well every time for us. I experimented a little by adding a tablespoon of molasses to this batch. I can’t say I noticed much of a difference.
I went with a dry brine this time, using Morton’s Tender Quick and various other brining seasonings. Here is a decent overview of the process (he mixes his own curing salts), and here is another take on it. They both use beef briskets but Kroger had a sale on big (10lb.) shoulder roasts so I used one of those and adjusted the amount of cure to suit.It takes a good while for the curing agent to diffuse through the meat, one this big will take a couple of weeks. Be sure to flip the meat daily, I put the shoulder in a big plastic zip bag and placed that into this same tub in case the bag leaked. Here it is, after rinsing the salt off, coated with a rub prior to smoking. There are all kinds of recipes online for a proper rub but they all are heavy on ground coriander and black pepper. I like a few ground juniper berries in my mix, and also paprika, garlic, onion powder, ground mustard seed, and ground bay leaves. I left this one in the 200 degree smoker overnight and nearly all the next day. The internal temps made it to 185 when I took it out for steaming. It was so big I used a big pasta cooker, keeping the water level below the lift out strainer. I added more water a couple of times before the temp reached the target of just over 200 degrees. Save that water! You can reduce it for a nice au jus. Because my middle name is Lazy, I held back on slicing the boneless ham I bought a few weeks ago during a post-holiday sale until the pastrami was ready. The slicer isn’t that hard to clean up, but, still.
I picked up some corned beef while at the market getting those whole chickens to smoke. We haven’t had fresh pastrami for a while and it seemed a waste to roll out the smoker just for the poultry. I left it going after removing the chicken and replaced them with the corned beef I had rolled in a pastrami rub. The pastrami seasoning is just my basic rub but with extra coriander, ground black pepper, and juniper berries. The juniper berries are optional but I think they work well.This one is sliced with the grain, exactly wrong! Slice across the grain! I salvage these slices by the expedient method of chopping them up.I like to pile the pastrami on a skillet and top with Swiss cheese and sauerkraut, add some sauerkraut juice to the pan and simmer it with a cover to melt the cheese.Scoop the hot pastrami onto a lightly toasted piece of rye bread and squeeze on thousand island dressing, serve with a pickle.
The International Grocery, a store in the next town past the closest, carries a good selection of Lebanese style pitas, delivered from an upstate bakery. This is a loaf of tannour bread. It’s thin and about 14″-16″ across. When I saw it I thought “instant pizza!”.The sauce is a whole grain mustard cut with plain yellow mustard with a ton of minced garlic. There are provolone and Swiss cheese slices atop the mustard and then a layer of pastrami broken into rough pieces, a little more shredded cheese, and then some of my refrigerator dills.We give this two thumbs up – especially given how quickly it comes together using that pre-baked crust. I did take it out of the oven a little sooner than I would have liked but I feared the crust would turn brittle. The edge crust – we call that part the “pizza bones” – did get hard but the mustard and cheeses kept the rest pliable.
This was just a spur of the moment thing. I started the dough the day before, not really sure yet what the toppings would be or I would have made a run after rye flour for the crust. I did look for rye flour today and finally found some at the local co-op store. I talked to a fellow there about the hard time we had finding it and he said there was a crop failure last year and it was a bit early yet for this year’s crop. This one was so much fun I’m pretty sure you’ll be seeing something similar here, soon.I didn’t use any sauce, as such, but I did brush the crust with garlic oil before laying the provolone on. Next layer was pastrami, then dill pickles, then the rest of the provolone we had on hand.The mustard was left off for the picture of the whole pie, I knew I wanted to use the bright yellow mustard on mine. Mrs J favors honey mustard.Enjoy!