Remember the first time you had a really GREAT smoked beef brisket? It was moist, flavorful, smokey goodness. I do, and it's haunted me ever since. I've tried to make a great smoked brisket a number of times but never got great results. One the rare occasion I found a point, the results were better, but the flat cuts I've smoked usually ended up dry and crumbly
But last night, I think I just may have figured it out, with the help of this forum! I was lucky to find a packers cut (full brisket, untrimmed) USDA Prime at Costco. Here's what I did -
1. I cut the entire brisket in half so it would fit in my smoker. I ended up with a slab of flat cut and a nice piece of point with some flat attached.
2. I trimmed the fat to about 1/2" thick, then scored and applied rub (2 different kinds...one a hawaiian rock salt mix from Da Kine, and Rib Rub from Cookshack). Wrapped them in aluminum foil and set them in the fridge for 48 hours (unintentionally longer than I expected but it turned out fine)
3. Using apple wood chips, I smoked the point piece for 8 hours at 230 F. I basted it once with a mop of Worcestershire sauce and replenished the chips around the 4 hour mark....I thought I ruined it because after 5 hours, the internal temp was at 150 F. But I fell asleep and didn't wake up for another 3 hours...I ran out thinking the internal temp would be at 200 F but it was at 167! Now I like my brisket tender but not to the point where it crumbles so I pulled it out.
This is what she looked like...
4. Wrapped it in foil and a towel before setting it inside a cooler (I believe this was the KEY in keeping this puppy moist!)
5. Opened her up after a long settling period and was greeted by the most delicious, moist brisket I've ever made.
You can see in the last 2 pictures, the difference between the fattier point meat (right side) vs the leaner flat cut. The thing that was most remarkable to me was how MOIST the flat cut portion was! While I'm sure the Prime grade of beef helped, I believe it was the foiling/resting step that kept it juicy. This is the one step I've never done before joining this forum.
The bark was definitely softened from the resting period as others have stated. Right out of the smoker, I could tell the bark was hard and crisp. I prefer the softened bark as it makes it easier to slice.
I can't wait to see how the flat cut portion by itself smokes up. I do hope it's as juicy as the flat part that was attached to the point. If it turns out as moist and tender, I will be one happy camper!
Thanks for reading and I welcome any comments or tips.