Welcome to the SMF Family...I prefer to smoke all meats on a rack, greater exposure to the smoke, with a drip pan underneath. I will then put the meat in the drip pan and cover to complete the cook. Brisket Flats definitely benefit from Foiling at some point, usually at the stall between 150 and 160°F, so in spite of the fact that the Bark gets softened I foil. With Brisket I like to take things further with the recipe below. I have not tried it but, now that I think of it, I see no reason you can't foil the Brisket right in the Au Jus and let it Braise until an IT of 190°F when you should uncover it and test for tenderness with a toothpick. If it slides in with no resistance in several places, it is done. If the IT is 190° but it still resists the toothpick, let it continue to cook with or without the foil covering, your choice. When it is done wrap in foil to rest and finish the Au Jus according to the instruction...JJ
Smokey Au Jus
1- Lg Onion,
3-4 Ribs Celery
3-4 Peeled Cloves of Garlic
Toss them in a pan under the Beef, and let the whole deal Smoke for one hour,
THEN add 4-6 Cups Beef Broth,
2 Tbs Tomato Paste,
1/2tsp Dry Thyme (4-5 sprigs Fresh)
1-2 ea Bayleaf
Finish the Smoking process to the IT you want.
While the Roast is resting, dump the pan juices veggies and all into a 2-3Qt Sauce pot and add 1Cup Red Wine, something you like to drink, and bring the Jus to a boil, lower the heat and simmer 20-30 minutes. Strain out the veggies and let the Jus rest a minute or so for the Fat to rise. Skim off the bulk of the fat then using strips of paper towel laid on top of the Jus then quickly removed, take off the last little bit of fat.
The purpose of Smoking the Vegetable for 1 hour before adding the Broth and Herbs is...The Smoked vegetables Roast in the Dry heat concentrating their Flavors and Sweetness giving the finished Jus a Richer, Deeper, Full Flavor.
Serve the sliced Beef Au Jus or thicken the Jus to make Gravy.
NOTE: If you are using this recipe with Brisket, additional Water will have to be added periodically to maintain the proper volume. Do not add more Broth as repeated addition and reduction will make the Au Jus too salty..