Pasterma – Dried Spiced Beef


PastermaBest time to make pasterma is in the fall. Have butcher remove meat from rib part of beef and slice into 1 1/2 inch thick and 3-4 inch wide slices, any length desired. Put a heavy string through one end of meat and tie into a loop. Cover each piece thoroughly with coarse bag salt and let stand in a bowl or pan for 3 days. Then wash off the salt under the running water and let soak in a pan of water for 1 hour. Hang from loops to drain for 1 hour.

Wrap meat in a cloth, arrange side by side on a flat surface, put a board over them, then lay a very heavy weight of some kind on top of the board to drain all the juices from the meat. Change to dry cloth every 12 hours. Continue this for 2 days. Hang again to dry in a cool, windy place for 2 weeks, or until meat is quite dry.

Make chaimen and soak the meat in it for 2 weeks. Then take out the meat and see that it is well covered with a coating of chaimen. Hang again for another week. It is now ready to eat. Store away in pickling jugs, cover, and keep in a cool place. Slice very thin for serving. If pasterma becomes too dry when stored away for some time, soak again in chaimen until it gets soft enough to slice.

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