Sunday Brunch: Pastrami Beet Bites

Chef Kevin McAllister from Cafe Robey shared his recipe for Pastrami Beet Bites.



 Pastrami Beet Bites

Serves 36

4 Hour Prep Time

1.5 Hour Cook Time

Skill Level: Intermediate


Ingredient List


6 medium red beets

1 sprig thyme

1 bay leaf

½ cup vinegar

½ cup water

½ cup sugar

3 tbsp. salt



Pre heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Rinse the beets and place them in a baking dish with remaining ingredients. Cover with foil. Pierce the skin with a toothpick and if it easily slides back out, remove from oven (about an hour and a half cook time). Let the beets cool. While still warm, peel the skin using a dry towel; use gloves. I recommend using an old scrap towel or a paper towel as it will turn bright pink. Cut the beets in to six wedges. Set aside the beets for later use; they are best at room temperature. Do not leave out for more than 4 hours after cooking. If prepping 1 day in advance, cool and store in the refrigerator.



2 tbsp. whole coriander

1 tbsp. whole black peppercorn

1 tsp. yellow mustard seeds

1 tsp. brown mustard seeds

2 juniper berries

1 tsp. brown sugar

1 tbsp. smokes sea salt


In a mortar and pestle crush the spices until finely ground


Stout syrup

12 oz. oatmeal stout beer

2 tbsp. sugar

Place in a saucepot on medium heat and reduce until a light syrup



¼ head green cabbage

2 tbsp. toasted caraway seeds

½ cup cider vinegar

1 tbsp. honey

2 tbsp. water

3 tbsp. olive oil

1 pinch salt

1 pinch black pepper


Slice the cabbage 1/8in thick, whisk the remaining ingredients in a bowl and pour over the cabbage. Toss the mixture and refrigerate for 3 hours.



Cauliflower Puree

1 head white cauliflower

¾ cup heavy cream

2 tbsp. white wine

3 shallots


lemon juice


Peel the shallots and cut thin. Sweat the shallots until translucent and tender. Core the head of cauliflower and chop the florets. Add white wine, and cook until dry. Add the chopped cauliflower and heavy cream. Cook the cauliflower and cream together. The cream will reduce but should not change in color. Once the cream is reduced and cauliflower tender, puree in a blender until smooth. Season with salt and a little lemon juice, chill and reserve.


Rye Toast

1 loaf pumpernickel bread unsliced

butter; light coat to bottom of frying pan


Cut the bread into 3/8inch slices. Cut Rounds using a 40 mm diameter ring cutter or a small glass with same dimension. When ready to serve, heat the butter in the pan and toast the bread rounds seasoning lightly with salt. 


The Dish!

Take the toasted pumpernickel rounds and lay them on a tray. With a butter knife spread the cauliflower puree on one side. Place a small pile of the marinated cabbage on top of the puree. Place one of the beets on top of the cabbage. Drizzle the stout syrup on top of the beets and finish with a light dusting of the pastrami crust. Enjoy at a holiday party with friends and libations!



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