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Hello Everyone
I decided to try a brisket in my smoker for the first time. I have used smokette countless times for ribs and pork butt... Just to make it more exciting, i am cooking a brisket for the family for xmas...
I have a 12.82 lb whole beef brisket from Costco, packer cut..
My plan is to put my rub (simple rub) on the night before. I have heard 1.5 hours per lb (estimate) @225 and to bring it to 190 deg...
I have also heard 1 hour a lb, plus 2 hours @ 200 deg. Most of the posts here have said to run the smoker at 225 deg... Has anyone cooked one at 200 deg?
Any advice , tips?
Should I trim off some of the fat?
Should I foil it halfway through?
There is no room for error being that this is part of Christmas dinner.. Also, my brother in law is smoking ribs.. my brisket has to come out better (brag gin rights at stake)...
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That's a long list of questions and my thoughts go back to my beginning of the long path down the brisket trail for me, especially when a fine brisket cooks answer would be,"just depends". Roll Eyes

While I don't have all the answers, here is some fuel for thoughts...

If you cook at 200* the whole time, won't it take forever for the meat to reach a temp of 190*? With that in mind, can a brisket read a therm? Some cooks might want it to slid off a chefs fork when you are trying to pick it up. Fork tender is a better way of telling doneness, then a set temp.

Just some thoughts until a better brisket cook comes along with the answers to all your questions.
Now us pellet cookers might cook at 170-200* for a period of time to get better smoke on the product or I have been known to do it with the electric smoker to help out with timing. When the internal temp of the brisket gets above 150*, it really is time to start thinking about getting along with the cooking part.

As far as trimming, you can and I do anymore, but I have a feeling that old brisket cooks that had a cooker full of packers didn't take the time to trim them. You can take a knife after they are cooked and scrape the fat off really easy.

Foil can be used to speed up the cook or help with moisture on a poor graded brisket,so it "just depends".
J-Dogg, I have some advice. I'm a recent newbie, having cooked only three briskets ever, all in the past two weeks. Look at my previous posts on this brisket page.

First time was good, but a bit overdone as moist, but not as moist as I was going for. Too tender as hard to cut without falling apart. Cooked to 195. The mistake was not testing for tenderness at a lower temp. Start checking at 185. Skewer should slide through various parts of the meat with little resistance, like room temperature butter. If it gives a harder resistance, leave in and check in another 30 to 45 minutes.

Don't bother basting, opening the door before checking for tenderness, or foiling until removal from the smoker. Brisket will be black from rub, which is now a beautiful bark. No need to remove flat from point and cook flat longer as both will be done at same time.

I rub Worcestershire all over the brisket, then place a heavy rub all over, including fat side. Don't score fat. Don't trim much. Remove the big and hard piece of fat. Feel for it, it's very hard and won't render properly.

Let sit in rub overnight, covered.

Place in top rack of smoker fat side down, place wood in box. Three ounces of hickory, three to four ounces of mesquite. Smoke flavour strong, but not overpowering, and guests agreed. Place meat temp probe in thickest part of flat. Turn on and smoke at 225. I actually start smoker at maximum temp as this will get heat element to maximum output and smoke starts quicker. I've timed it. Turn down to 225 once smoker reads 200 temperature, about 30 minutes.

I cooked a 13.5 pound packer this way and at 12 hours and forty minutes, temperature internally was 178. Time constraint, so jacked to 300 and one hour 20 minutes later, internal went up to 187. Tested and perfectly done. Double wrapped foiled, towered, coolered (FTC'd). Sliced three hours later, against grain. Amazing. Tender. Juicy. Sliceable. Smokey. Yummy bark. Rave reviews at work potluck.

If you don't jack the heat, it will take longer to reach that temp and get past the 170 plateau. Be patient, it can take hours.

My rub is 1/2 cup each of whole black leprechauns, coarse salt, paprika, and Costco no salt seasoning blend. 1/4 cup garlic powder.

Good luck. Post results with photos.
J-Dogg;

I'm sure your cook will go fine and the guests will appreciate what ever you put on the table, BUT, IMHO you are taking a chance, as you've not smoked a brisket in the past.

Every time that I've done a new recipe for a dinner or party, w/o a test run, it was somewhat nerve racking and did not always yield the best results. My standard operating procedure is to always run a batch or two in advance to gain the experience and tweak the recipe if needed.

Since I know it's not practical at this point to smoke a test Brisket, just go with Smokin's 101 and don't change a thing. It should come out great.

Just my .02
When I got my Smokette back in the last century, it had instructions on the unit to cook brisket at 180 degrees. I failed miserably every time I tried that (but in hindsight I may have just undercooked).
What I found worked the best was to set the cooker at 225, and cook for 1 hour per pound, and add 30 minutes for every time you open the door. Use a thermometer to fine tune, but you will have quality product by just using the time formula.
I did minimal or no trimming. (Trimming the cooked brisket as you serve adds an entertainment value to your gathering, and makes you the celebrity).
Use any beef seasoning of your choice - something more salt based with minimal or no sugar. Plain salt and pepper will work fine too.

Using this method is brain dead easy so that you can pay attention to your guests and takes out the guess work out of meal timing. Plan your cook so that you can wrap the brisket in foil and let it rest for at least 1 hour before you slice it.

And when you get crazy enough to want to compete, then we will chat again about a completely different method….
Back when Smokin' and I had smokettes,there were no therms and the best advice we knew was don't mess with things a lot.Foil was a rumor come outa Ol Mex part of TX.

Brisket 101 is the essential from many fine cook's learning errors.
Good advice above from good cooks-including don't do it first for a major dinner.

I would never tell you to do this to learn how to cook briskets,but sometimes survival is at stake.

Do whatever you like with temps,rubs etc and cook to an about 165º.Remove, place on a double wrap of HD foil.Paint it with about 1/4 cup of whatever red sauce you like and a couple shakes of Lee and Perrins Wooster and wrap tight with no air space.The cooker should be heating to max all this time.Cook to above 195º,closer to 200º.Check with a probe,or meat fork for tender.If about there ,wrap tight and leave in a hot box for 3 hrs.

About half hr before serving ,loosen the foil to start cooling towards room temp.
I assume you'll have read 101 about scraping some fat off,or not.

In serious cow country,most places just slice and chop a little and let the diner eat how they like.
Separate point and flat and slice across the grain.
If a little overdone, slice a little thick.

Some defat the soppin's from the foil and pour over slices.
Underdone is always worse than overdone.

There is a good chance it will be the best they have ever had.Cookshacks tend to do that.

Start early,it will stay hot a long time.
quote:
Originally posted by Tom:
Back when Smokin' and I had smokettes,there were no therms and the best advice we knew was don't mess with things a lot.Foil was a rumor come outa Ol Mex part of TX.

Brisket 101 is the essential from many fine cook's learning errors.
Good advice above from good cooks-including don't do it first for a major dinner.

I would never tell you to do this to learn how to cook briskets,but sometimes survival is at stake.

Do whatever you like with temps,rubs etc and cook to an about 165º.Remove, place on a double wrap of HD foil.Paint it with about 1/4 cup of whatever red sauce you like and a couple shakes of Lee and Perrins Wooster and wrap tight with no air space.The cooker should be heating to max all this time.Cook to above 195º,closer to 200º.Check with a probe,or meat fork for tender.If about there ,wrap tight and leave in a hot box for 3 hrs.

About half hr before serving ,loosen the foil to start cooling towards room temp.
I assume you'll have read 101 about scraping some fat off,or not.

In serious cow country,most places just slice and chop a little and let the diner eat how they like.
Separate point and flat and slice across the grain.
If a little overdone, slice a little thick.

Some defat the soppin's from the foil and pour over slices.
Underdone is always worse than overdone.

There is a good chance it will be the best they have ever had.Cookshacks tend to do that.

Start early,it will stay hot a long time.


^^^^^^^^^^^^ What he said!!! ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
quote:
Originally posted by Tom:
Do whatever you like with temps,rubs etc and cook to an about 165º.Remove, place on a double wrap of HD foil.Paint it with about 1/4 cup of whatever red sauce you like and a couple shakes of Lee and Perrins Wooster and wrap tight with no air space.The cooker should be heating to max all this time.Cook to above 195º,closer to 200º.Check with a probe,or meat fork for tender.If about there ,wrap tight and leave in a hot box for 3 hrs.


Solid advice for a young cook right there, wanting a good Christmas meal.

Rick Salmon, an old cook from KC,shared a nice marinade that can be used during the wrapping...

LINK
Dogg, did 16 friday night and got 9 on now.

I like to trim to about 1/4" like to scor the fat, and place a good amount of cookshack brisket rub on all edges. I only worry about how much time I have to smoke to depend on the temp I smoke it at. Fast or slow.
I wrap in foil with a few things (butter) degrees and pull at a temp of 195-200. let cool and then slice.

RandyE
Shh.... Don't tell anyone but.....

Trim it how you like, rub it with what you want to use.

Cook it in the smokette for 4 hours at the temp that gives you maximum smoke.

Then foil it and put whatever wrapping foil you want to use ( I scored a 180 with 1/2 cup Head Country and 1/2 Cup of Apple juice because that's all I had since I forgot my foiling sauce)

Then,

Shhh... Now Don't tell. Take it inside and put it in your oven at 300 degrees and cook it until a ice pick just sinks in the top with no resistance (start checking after 1 1/2 hours in 300 degree oven. or if you have one of those fancy polder temp probes set it to 200 and start checking from there.

Then wrap it in a beach towel for a couple of hours to rest and pour off the juice, separate the fat and then put the juice on it after you slice it and watch everyone go crazy over it.

P.S. its ok if its so tender you have to slice it 1/2" thick. its not a contest IT'S CHRISTMAS!

Enjoy!
Get news!....

Now, we all know that as cooks, we are a little more picky on what we would like to see in a product. With that in mind, tell us what you think needs improvement in it? too tough, too dry, too tender(falls apart when you pick a piece up), too much smoke, too little flavor, etc....

We are more than happy to give some thoughts on your questions, not many cooks are that fortunate, so take advantage of this opportunity.

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