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Why oh Why did I buy a 12lb corned beef!!!

I need to cook a 12lb corned beef Sunday! I am trying to find out how long to cook it (not in the oven)

I am wondering if it would be better to cut it in half and cook in 2 pots?

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  1. No, it wouldn't be better. Why not in the oven?

    If you're braising it, it'll take the same time either way.

    1. I am reading that it takes 50m per lb so around 10hrs for the whole 12lbs

      If I cut it in half and use 2 pots it will be done sooner

      4 Replies
      1. re: doberlady

        If it's flat I don't think this simple formula makes sense; it's not like a turkey that is bigger in all three dimensions; how thick is it? I can't imagine it would need to cook for 10 hours, and cutting it in half isn't going to make it thinner, only shorter, so that wouldn't really change the cooking time.

        1. re: doberlady

          It won't take the whole ten hours, I would start checking on the tenderness after 5-6 hours.

          Perhaps fourunder will check in, the meat expert.

          1. re: Jerseygirl111

            Thanks for the kind words....you posted exactly one minute before me down below.

        2. Don't cut it in half, but since it sounds like you have a whole brisket, you want to divide it into the flat and point cuts. The two sections of meat have a different grain and the point needs a longer cooking time. Separating them into the two pieces will make it easier to cut across the grain and to cook each to optimal temperature. Also, it will be easier to handle two pieces rather than one big hunk. If you have a big enough pot, you can keep them in the same pot and you'll remove the flat before the point.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Melanie Wong

            The two sections are divided by a layer of fat,if I remember correctly.

          2. i have a large electric roaster that I could use to cook both at the same time

            1. it looks to be all 1 flat piece

              1 Reply
              1. re: doberlady

                Wow,that seems very big to me, maybe a huge cow! I would still cut in half to fit my pot! Good luck, it is only boiled/braised beef so little worry!

              2. Unless you need all that corned beef to serve to a really big crowd, here is an alternative use for some of it: Fake Pastrami. Boil the corned beef as usual but put pickling spice mixture in the water. Then fish it out and wash it off and dry it with paper towels. Lay it in a baking dish and stud with whole cloves. Mix dark brown sugar with a little mustard and smear it all over the meat. Bake it at 350* until the sugar glazes on it. Take it out of the oven and spoon the goo over it from time to time as it cools. It will slice better after you refrigerate it. Makes delicious sandwiches, especially on rye bread.

                1. Braising on the stove takes 3.5-4.0 for the Flat portion. the Point takes a little longer. The weight is not a factor when braising. Get it in the pot, bring it to boil, skim the scum and reduce to a gentle simmer. cover the pot and check at the 3.25-3.5 hour mark with a fork.

                  1. Using the image of the Whole Packer Brisket, I actually will cut into 2 or 3 pieces to fit into a pot for the stove top. If I were doing an oven braise, then I would leave it whole. In the picture, the Point is on the left and I would slice right between the two left EXCEL stamps where the USDA mark is with an X. The Flat, which would be to the right is now about a 12+ inches long, and I would slice that in half. The result is three sections for easy removal from the pot, and easy pieces to slice across the grain.


                    4 Replies
                    1. re: fourunder

                      Okay, you'll love this: The Alto guide says to leave the whole CB in its original cryo, and place in the oven at 250F for 20 minutes per pound with the probe set at 100F, and then hold for a minimum of six hours at 160F with a final internal temp of 175F.

                      I'm wondering if the cryo is heat safe.... They say you can wrap in your own plastic but it isn't required.

                      Who's going to be the first to try this, you or me?

                      1. re: acgold7

                        Well, I no longer have my Alto Shaam, so I guess it's up to you my friend. I will however give it a test in my home oven with one of the Flats I'll purchase which will be in the 3 pound range.

                        Up until recently, i always attended the New York Restaurant Show annually....and about 30 years ago is when I happened upon the Alto-Shaam Booth to see their wares....I've mentioned this story before and in this particular encounter, i spoke with the representative who happened to have prepared a Corned Beef Brisket entirely in the AS Cook and Hold oven. The one specific I recall though, was that the thermostat setting back then was 225*. I sampled the CB and it was absolutely perfect, both tasty and tender. It was the launch to my low and slow roasting ways.

                        For the record, the Cryovac is safe, but my past experience is you cannot cook them as a boil in bag method. You must reseal with another FoodSaver type system. If you are worried about the Cryovac, Plastic Film is heat safe and I've seen many cooks use it in both the oven and tightly wrapped in boiling water.

                        For those of you who have no idea what acgold and I are talking about.....here's a video produced by Alto Shaam


                        1. re: fourunder

                          I'm wondering if you could reproduce this effect in a home oven just by using a good probe thermometer and their rough timing guidelines...

                          Why is the Cryo oven-safe but not boil-safe?

                          BTW I am skeptical about their math. I find it doubtful that during the time the oven descends from 250 to 160, a CB with an internal of 100 will ever reach 175, no matter how long you hold at 160. I wonder if they have the numbers mixed up, as I've found a few typos in the Guide.

                          1. re: acgold7

                            In the video, they say 3 hours...I find that suspect, but then again, int my experience, I've used only 215-225 and I've gone as long as 8+ hours.

                            The cryovac bag separates in boiling water.

                            the only problem I see with using the cryovac bag in the home oven is piercing the bag to lose the steaming effect. I would probably wrap in the foodservice plastic film as suggested to create a tighter seal around the meat.