[London, WC2] Mishkins

So, if I’ve understood Mishkins correctly, it’s a British take on an East European Jewish New York deli. And, to my mind, it’s like other British takes on American food such as BBQ, it’s enjoyable enough but it’s not the real deal. So, don’t go expecting Katz or the now closed Stage Deli.

There was chopped liver to start – a couple of quenelles of it sat on toasted baguette. It was rich and tasty. And there were three “burnt end croquettes” – again a tasty little starter with some nicely spiced beef.

For mains, we both went with the salt beef sandwich which you’re offered with or without fat. So, that was an easy decision. And it’s good long cooked meat, in generous portion (although not anywhere near as generous as Katz). The bread is smeared with mustard and there’s sliced dill pickle on the side. We shared a side order of slaw – carrot, cabbage, radish in an oil/vinegar dressing. That worked. We also had chips which were only OK – they were skin-on fat chips which somehow managed to taste more of roast potato than chips.

Thanks — this has been on my “to-try” list for a while. How robust was the bread? When the meat part of a salt beef sandwich is described as “generous” I always worry about the bread being able to cope with it.

Trying to wrap my mind around an NY deli serving quennels of chopped liver, let alone a baguette, even after you warned not to expect the real deal.[quote=“Harters, post:1, topic:2660”]
salt beef
[/quote]

Is this a form of pastrami, or brisket?

Kake - bread was absolutely fine - this was a well balanced sandwich in terms of the meat to bread ratio. “Generous” for a British sandwich, rather than what I tend to feel are overstuffed ones you get in the States. One you can easily get in your gob without the risk of dislocating your jaw.

HT - brisket. They also do a Reuben which uses pastrami.

Here’s me… another Inquisitor, John. Was the salt beef sliced thinly as is done in NY… or most places in the States? I tend to stay away from these, ‘takes on,’ places. I lived too long in America to find
these restaurants even close to my fondest memories or what my taste buds are after. I sometimes will order blintzes. There’s almost nothing anyone can do to ruin those.

Is it different from corned beef?

No. Thicker slices - maybe 3mm.

For me, corned beef comes out of a tin - so, yes, very different.

You can get hot sliced corned beef in New York-style delis in America. It’s more pink and flavorful than brisket (which is also on every deli menu). Also, I am guessing that the home-made corned beef and cabbage I ate every St Patrick’s Day as a child (my mother made it for my Irish-American father) was more than just a brisket, but I’d need to ask her. My mother by her own admission never cared for cooking, so if it was the real deal corned beef, it must be very simple to make at home.

My other gripe about salt beef sandwiches over here is the bread used. In America, it’s almost always called rye bread and is much different than what’s served here with the same name. I’m just a creature of habit.

The corned beef sandwiches in America are brisket, just cooked a different way than what the Irish call corned beef. I think it’s all the same cut of beef when it starts out. Brisket can also be cooked in what I call, ‘the Jewish style.’ It’s served with carrots and often a sweet and sour (not like Chinese) sauce.

Yes, I know they are brisket, but isn’t the meat brined first? It’s possible that my mother bought a pre-brined brisket from a local deli or butcher for St Patrick’s day.

But if you order brisket in a Jewish deli, for a sandwich or on a plate, you will get a grayish brown meat. Corned beef is always a bright pink, and it has more zing.

This was a fairly solid white bread, like a bloomer. My experiecne with rye bread is that bought from the likes of Lidl - very thin and quite chewy , like this - http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4129/5057528563_e5d02dd4be_z.jpg

There are so many kinds of rye bread. I do like the dark kind found in British supermarkets, but it’s not what’s used, as you know, in America… Katz’s etc. The closest photo I could find was on this page… scroll down on the right to the photo of the corned beef sandwich. This rye appears to have caraway seeds, something I never developed a taste for.

Yep - it’s all in the cooking of the brisket.

The wikipedia article seems to indicate that it is nitrates that give corned beef it’s pink color, not the cooking.

Brisket has two parts - the flat and the point; the flat being the lean end, and the point being the juicy fatty part.

Salt beef is identical to American corned beef (though people may disagree - there are enough variations of corned beef and salt beef that some cross-over and some do not). When big delis make it they use both ends so you can specify fat or lean.

In Australia they make salt-beef/corned beef out of silverside, a cheap hindleg cut which is sometimes called pot-raost.

I don’t think any country uses any other cuts than brisket, though for pastrami, some places use the plate (or belly) which is extremely fatty but with slow cooking and smoking becomes delightful.

Irish corned beef tends to be the lean/flat end of the brisket, in my experience.

BTW: the pink comes from sodium nitrite. Corned beef without it is brown and gross.

Thanks for all the education! So salt beef is pink too?

Do you know if Australian pot roast is the same as what Americans call pot roast or Swiss steak?

Yup, salt-beef is pink. It’s litearlly the exact same thing as corned beef. If its not pink, it just doesnt have the nitrite, but will taste the same .

Thanks again!

a friend ordered - he’d been before. we had fried popcorn chicken, which was tender and served with a japaleno mayo, not exactly jewish but tasty. the burnt end croquettes were very nice - soft with a crispy outside and the meat good spicy flavour. we had a reuben sandwich, looking nothing like any I’ve had in north America. first the bread isn’t rye (American style rye not the hard kind served in Britain) and the meat was thick cut and only a slice on there, not several. the flavour was good though and I had no complaints. we had chips, which I liked. I also ordered a lemonade, which was probably the best lemonade I’ve ever had - so zingy and fresh. i’m spoiled by the piled high fatty corned beef sandwiches from LA and NY and i’m more a fan of smoked meat in montreal to be honest but this was decent. so who’s going to bring smoked meat to London?

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter!

Press Room
“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold