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If I am making a corned beef and after 10 days I want to taste it and make sure I got the seasoning right. If not I'll fix it and let it soak for another few days.

So I want to cut off a small piece and cook it. Maybe 4 oz. what would be the best approach for cooking it? Would it follow the normal rules for making a corned beef such as internal temperature which will probably happen pretty fast or does it need a minimum amount of time for some chemical or mechanical processes to happen? Any other ideas?

  • How are you planning on cooking the larger corned beef roast? – MeltedPez Nov 21 '17 at 23:29
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I make a lot of home cured corned beef so the seasonings are pretty set. When I first started, I didn't try to make a soft tiny roast to test the seasoning, instead I sliced off a thicker slice and cooked in slowly on the stovetop until it was done to my liking then tasted it. I wasn't worried about making it soft and tender when I was testing for seasoning. One of the best ways to make a roast soft and tender is to use a sous-vide immersion circulator. Set it to your final temperature, let the water heat up, put the roast in a plastic bag, remove the air and cook until tender. You can find dozens of resources about sous-vide cooking on-line.

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What is important with food safety when cooking meat is to get to a specific minimum safe temperature for the meat being cooked. Sometimes, you must not only reach that temperature, but the meat must also remain at (or above) that point for a period of time to ensure food safety; this is why some meats require a resting period. While the resting period can also have other benefits, those are out of scope for this question, and will not be addressed here.

The following chart gives a brief overview of the issue you are bringing up, although there are more in-depth details available online, if you should wish to look deeper into the matter.

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    What about for deliciousness? – mroll Nov 21 '17 at 18:22
  • As far as I am aware, no matter how unappetizing in flavor and/or texture a food may be, the safety of consuming it is unaffected by such properties. – Paul Beverage Nov 21 '17 at 18:27
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    The science, and the suggestions, are both based on the temperature needed to reduce the risk of illness. For example, someone could fall 100 feet and live without any issues, but doing so repeatedly continually increases the chances that someone harmful to the person's health will occur. The same idea is presented with food safety. This also has some connection to the large-scale food production seen in many food processing plants, where major, wide-spread contamination could occur, therefore increasing the need for caution and food safety practices. – Paul Beverage Nov 21 '17 at 19:58
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    @Hilmar for some things, the source of the meat matters a lot, and the general rule errs on the safe side in case the meat is questionable. For instance, one of the concerns with pork is killing any parasites. If your pork contains zero parasites, then you don't need to get to a temp high enough to kill them for the pork to be safe to eat. It's like the recommendation to wash your vegetables or even your hands. If they're not contaminated with anything, then you don't need to wash them, but it's safer to always wash them, just in case they're contaminated and you don't know. – Kat Nov 21 '17 at 22:11
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    @PaulBeverage what I really meant to ask is "how do I cook a tiny roast so that it will be soft and tender?" – mroll Nov 21 '17 at 23:04

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