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Hi All- I have cooked about ten of the briskets now...all turning out well. bBut, even after I am done scraping the fat off of the packer or the occassional trimmed fat that I buy, the slices have so much fat in them I can hardly stand eating them. It seems like the last couple of months that I cook the brisket, it looks great, I trim it and eat it. While eating I am experiencing fat throughout the entire damn thing...anybody with similar thoughts? it just seems real gristlely to me...
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Well,I'm no brisket expert,but it sounds like it don't cook enough to render the fat.

If you are slicing the whole packer as one piece,there would be the fat layer between the point and flat.

If the flat is cooked to tender,it should be almost too lean.

If the seperated point is tossed back in the cooker for 2-3 hrs to finish,it should eat like a fine steak.

Just a couple of thoughts.
Couple more questions would be,brand and grade.

I've had packers come at 185º-210º internal.

If it has that much gristle throughout the flat,it could be commercial grade-which should have been pound sold at the yards for ground beef.

Before I'd give up on briskets,I'd cook one to about 203º internal and see what you get.
Last edited by tom
i am like tom
the gristlepart really was the key off there and i think he is onto it.
what grade are these??
i cook select full packers every weekend and have never had a gristle problem.
one the fat part i have to ask how closely are you triming your briskets?
on the bottom is a big pocket of fat. if you cut this out it might help. your cut will be wedged shaped guess on most of mine it comes out at about 45-60 degree angle and removing that reduces the fat in your slices with no apparent lose of overall tenderness. the fat on the top i trim down to 1/8 to 1/4" overall.
hope it helps but if you got commercial grade it wont help at all on the gristle problem.
I know something is wrong with me but, after trimming the brisket before smoking as stated by Prisonchef, I like those little bits of fat that tenderizes the brisket. I cut or pull the brisket, fat and all, and if my guest want to trim or remove it in their plate that is fine with me.

I do make sure my wife doesn't see me eating some of that good flavored fat and then I trim some of the fat so she can see it in my plate. Wink Like, Stevegardner, she can't stand the fat even to look at it. Confused

Perhaps Steve is saying gristle when in fact he really means fat. If so, I think fat (or well marbled) may be indicative of a decent cut of brisket. Like Donna said, it may just be the connective tissue. It can appear rather gelatinous at times. I suppose it's possible that people who are not used to eating brisket, such as myself, may find it a bit fatty (rich) for their tastes. But it sure tastes good!
L.A --You are probably correct. It may not be gristle. It may have been just "marbled to the hilt". Either way, I could not stand it. Too much fat for me. It seemed that every single piece that I cut from tie brisket had to be mainured individually to be edible. I do not mind a little fat here and there, but it seems as if the briskets I am getting at Albertsons are just loaded. I am not at all opposed to cooking it more to get rid of more of it. I am cooking to about 195 and they are done, no probs there. Don't get me wrong, the flavor, seasoning, doneness all seem to be spot on. But, every single piece is real fatty...did I say ick?? LOL.
The ribs, pulled pork and chicken knock my socks off. Maybe I will stay with them!
Originally posted by stevegardner:
but it seems as if the briskets I am getting at Albertsons are just loaded.

I'd bet that it was select as best.

Maybe we need to get more specific with our comments so we can help. Trying to dissect a brisket via the internet is tough enough.

Next time you do a brisket, take some photos and show us where you're having problems. You indicating fat/gristle is an issue where no one has gone before.

And maybe we need to talk about specifics because I never get fat/gristle that runs THROUGH the meat (the brisket muscle doesn't work that way)

You will get fat all over the outside, and in the layers between the point/deckle and the flat, but that's easy enough.

Is it the Flat or the Point that's got a lot of fat?

If it's the point, trim it off at 195, and take the flat out and wrap it. Put the point back in to finish smoking until it hits at least 210 or even 215. That piece has a lot of fat running through it.

Brisket that I've had at Famous Dave's seems like that. If you pull a flat slice to stretch it, you can see all the connective tissue. It's like a honeycomb with meat inside.

When I cook briskets, there's fat, but no connective tissue.

As Tom said in his post at the top of this thread, "it sounds like it don't cook enough to render the fat" (and connective tissue).
We sometimes save 2 or 3 points in the freezer,and recook them on days we have a short cook.

Another 3 hrs to about 210º-215º usually does it.

Or chop it into 1.5 in chunks,put in a half pan with holes in the bottom,cook a couple hrs.

Pull out,toss with a little sauce and back in for another 1/2 hr.

Ummm,burnt ends!
All comes down to terminology.

In Kansas City, places will sell out of the point because that's why you make burnt ends with. Yes I'd say it's the fatty piece of the brisket.

Leave your brisket whole, take it out when the flat hits 195 and passes the "prod" test. Take it out and cut off the point (it's roughly in a U shape) and put it back it for a couple of hours.

Anytime I serve a brisket, the point is the preferred piece by most as with the fat, it has lots of flavor.

If you don't like that part, don't serve it. Or do flats only (but the you'll have different issues).

Ummmmm Burnt Ends (someone else said that) Big Grin
ok great description. this is something i run into every weekend. next time you do a brisket give this a try.
when you are carrving the brisket after cooking start at the skinny part and slice until you run into the honeycomb looking section that dennis-ut descripes.
make a horizontal cut thru this area. ez to do just kind of hold the top part up while cutting and gravity will guide the cut.
trim the fat from the top of you skinny piece that you were cutting and go on until it's gone.
flip the top part over and remove the honeycomb part.
now notice the grain. you will have to reorient this piece to continue cutting across the grain but this is good as if you left the brisket whole part of the slice would be with the grain and part of the same slice would be against the grain.
learned this from building a brisket base of sales in a non brisket state. the honeycomb freaks a lot of people out.
hope it helps
don't give up on brisket. cook flats if you like them but like smokin said they are more demanding but are still do-able

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