Sunday 2 June 2024

Curing Meat

 It's been a while since I've cured any meat. But now my wife and children seem to have sandwiches most days (and me) I want them to have the best lunch boxes possible. We already bake all our own bread, 4 loaves of sourdough for breakfast each week and about 28 rolls for lunch, but I get fed up with buying little packets of meat, with far too much plastic, cut far too thinly. 

I decided it was time to up my game. 

I've cured meat in the past, but fell out the habit. this is just me dipping my toe back in. I ordered soem different cures and bought the meat to practice on. A joint of brisket for pastrami and a small boned out joint of pork to make ham. 

The pastrami only takes 4 days in a wet brine, then boiled up for three hours it comes out this beautiful pink, flavoured with the herbs and spices from the brine (and cooking liquid). 

Perfect for sandwiches. I sliced it up then froze some and put the rest ready for the week. 

The ham was a dry cure, measured out to be 3% of the total weight of the meat, then left for a day per 12mm of meat (in this case about 8 days). Because you're only using the right amount of cure it''s hard to make it too salty with this method. 

I roasted this little joint and we had some for tea then some for sandwiches. It was  a completely perfect little ham. 

I'm always surprised how easy it is to cure meat. It doesn't really take too long, and it doesn't use that much equipment. It does provide a higher quality of meat for our sandwiches (honestly look at some of the ingredient lists on some of the packaged meats - we don't need to be eating all that!), but I need to get in a cycle with it like I am with baking bread. 

One thing I do think is that if I start to do this regularly then I need a way to slice the meat evenly and finely, maybe a meat slicer would be a good investment. My problem with that would be another item to store in the kitchen. 

What do you think, should I buy a meat slicer? Who has one already?


  1. I've got one and never use it. If I lived closer you'd be more than welcome to have it . I'm in S. Devon if you're ever on holiday this way.

  2. I stopped eating packet ham years ago, infact I don't like to eat any meat which is processed back into meat shape, unless from our local butcher.

  3. very nice, upping your game indeed.

  4. Kev - I literally had no idea one could do this in such a straightforward manner! It seems a great deal more straightforward than what I had led myself to believe. Scurries off to research more...

  5. Lidl sell meet slicers from time to time. Think it cost 36 Euros. It also slices our pigs meat and bread and vegetables.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...