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Hi all! This is my first post and I really need help.
I received my smokette a couple of weeks ago and have smoked several things so far. I have read the forums and the guides and I still cannot make my brisket come out right. This last time I thought I would try a packer (mistake!) and I put my rub on it and stuck it in the smoker, fat side down, at 5:30pm yesterday. Oh yeah, there were 2 chickens below the brisket and I used 7.5 oz hickory. Anyway the brisket was on the middle rack and I set the polder for 185 (because my one good brisket came out at 185) and set the smoker for 225. At 10:55 this morning the polder went off so I turned the smoker down to 200 till 12 for lunch. So heres the deal-it was not tender and didn't even have much more than a roasted meat flavor. What now? Confused
Thanks in advance for your help!
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I would have definitely put the brisket FAT side UP. That way you're bascially self basting the meat as it cooks. A lot of folks will foil the brisket at 165 or so, add some beef broth and finish it for a couple hours.

That seems like a lot of wood too - I've never went beyond about 4 ozs on my Smokette. I bet your chicken had a serious smoke flavor.

Hope this helps. I'm sure many others will chime in on here.

Candy -- Sorry about your brisket. If you have not done so already, you need to check out Smokins' Brisket 101. Also, check out the thread on Incredible Brisket Recipe. Between these two topics, you'll be knocking out outstanding briskets in no time.

A couple of additional toughts. First, regardless of what you Polder read, check for tenderness by pushing the probe in at a few different locations. If it does not go in an out easily, you're not done. Also, try checking the temps in different locations, especially with a packer. Maybe shoot for a little higher temp, such as 195 as mentioned by williesQ. Finally, I'm a firm believer in holding the brisket after the smoke. Pull, foil, and cooler for 2-3 hours. Temp comes up a little and the meat tenderizes quite a bit by allowing the juices to redistribute.
Yep, 7+ oz of wood is a lot of smoke, expecially for chicken. Foul is too easily over-smoked.

On the brisket, I would have foiled and added a cup or so of either beef stock or some thinned sauce, popped it back in the smoker and taken it to 195�.

Your first post says "fat side down." In the future try to do fat side up so the meat is basted with its own drippings. The fat is where most of the flavor is.

Doesn't sound like it was a total washout. Good job!!! Big Grin
Candy, I made the mistake of putting fat side down one time. It was dark and I had rubbed the whole thing. It made a BIG difference. Fat side up. Also, My wife thinks it makes a difference if I maranade the meat overnight. I use some sort of soda pop, Coke, Rootbeer, what ever. AND, dls is right, try the above "incredible brisket recipe". Smoke on!
Smoke N Itlay
Fat: You'll find arguments for fat side up and down. Even (or especially) from the comp cooks.
Wood: Sounds right for my tastes--I like smoke.
Temp: 185 is a good slicing temp to pull the brisket, but even though your polder alarm went off, are you sure it was really 185 throughout? Next time poke your temp probe in various locations to see how easily it penetrates the meat--it should slide in without much resistance.
Foil: I'm a fan of the Scrutchfield technique of foiling at 165--and I always foil with the fat side up. I don't add anything as the brisket produced plenty of its own. But many do. Others don't foil at all.

I agree with Italy about not doing chicken at the same time. I think chicken benefits from more heat and less smoke. I'll do butts and briskets together, but I generally don't mix chicken, fish, etc.
I don't foil mine at all. Another "test." Poke your finger into the fat cap. It it goes right through, it is done. Likewise if the fat scrapes off like jelly - done. I try to take my brisket out a little before either of these and have been removing at about 192-195. Tender but still holds the slice. One more thing, when you take the brisket out, cut off the deckle, reseason with more rub and throw it back in for three or four hours. The burnt ends are fabulous
I have since tried another brisket, a flat this time and it came out better. Not perfect but better. I made sure to put the fat side up and put the temp probe in several different spots and they came out pretty close but it didn't seem to go in very easily so I just let it sit for a while with the cooker set at 200 (out of foil) and it was tastier but still a little tough.
Smoke, do you rinse the soda pop off before you put your rub on? I think I'd like to try that.
WTG Candy. I normally remove at 190, it has yet to fail me. I will also set the probe in one spot and once it hits the desired temp, then I will poke around a little, but not before then. But then I am a foiler and at 160-170 I usually wrap. My next Brisket, perhaps tomorrow or Saturday I am gonna not wrap. Just so I can pipe in when the issue arises.

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