I've been itching to do a brisket. This is probably only the third brisket I've ever done. Only the second packer I've done. The first couple I did were ok. But this one blew my mind. Wouldn't change a damn thing I did with this one and I'm ready to do another! Let's get into it...
My local shop that I usually get my meat from had packers for 5.99/lb. Heeeelllll no. No way I was going to pay 70-80 bucks for a packer. So I checked my other favorite spot. The U.S. Foods Chef Store. They had this beauty for 3.15/lb. That's more like it!
Did an injection of beef broth, worcestershire, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and a dash or two of cayenne. Rubbed it down with a plethora of kosher salt, (fresh) cracked pepper, and garlic powder (true Texas style!). Here she is bright and early Saturday morning ready for the smoker.
ETA: I slathered in A1 to help the rub adhere. Couldn't find the thick worcestershire. And even though I don't care for the flavor of A1 by itself, over the course of the long smoke it cooked off any A1 flavors.
I've been using the Johnny Cash method lately on my Weber Kettle. But for this one I decided to do a half ring and a basket to get it up to temp faster. Used Kingsford briquettes. I've been going back and forth between briqs and lump. But I like using briqs when I'm doing a Johnny Cash. For wood I went with pecan and apple. I've been on a big pecan kick lately and love using it with big pieces of meat, particularly my butts. Had never used apple on a brisket before but it complimented the pecan nicely.
By 7:30am, she was cruising at 250*, just what I wanted.
Five hours in, and she's looking good. Point of reference here...I took a little nap when I got it rolling. Woke up and the temps had spiked to about 300*. No big deal. Such a long smoke I wasn't worried about it but I opened to lid, futzed with the vents and got it back down.
At 1:15pm, about 6 or 7 hours in, ready to foil.
Eight hours in and the flat is where I want it. Time to pop that point off.
Turns out that reading was a little off. So I went ahead and separated the point from the flat. I wrapped the flat back up and threw it in a 275* oven to finish up. It was actually only about 188-190* internal when I separated. But it climbed on up to 200 within an hour in the oven.
Separated the point and coated them down good with my standard barbecue rub. I didn't have enough rub so I whipped up some of Jeff's rub to add to mine. Here they are ready to go back on the smoker.
I put some fresh coals in and another chunk or two of wood and let the burnt ends go for about two more hours while the flat was resting in a cooler with some towels. After about the first 45 mins or hour I started saucing the ends. I used a store bought sauce that I cut with my vinegar pepper sauce to thin it a littler and give it more of a kick. I also moved them from the pans directly to my smoking rack/pan. I wanted to get some more heat on them and carmelize the sugars. Here they are ready to come off. And BOY were they good!!! Also of note, the last time I did a packer the burnt ends were just ok. I've finally got them dialed in now and they were melt-in-your-mouth good!
Finally...ready for some brisket porn? I forgot to remember the grain before I cooked. So I had to hack off a little corner and make sure I was cutting the correct way! Beautiful smoke ring, if I may pat myself on the back.
I tried to get a good picture of the meat and show the "pullability" because it was perfect. It wasn't falling apart but had that perfect separation between the meat fibers when you pulled on the pieces.
Overall, I could not be happier with this brisket. I was a little anxious going into it because I hadn't done a brisket in years. And the others I had done were solid, but I wanted this one to really be a homerun. I hit it out the park. Also, I didn't get a picture of it, but I did an au jus too that really took it over the top. For my foiling liquid I just used some of the injection I did. That mixed with the rendered fat and juices in the foil. I drained that out and put it in the fridge for the fat to solidify. Scooped that off and had a fantastic au jus. Hope everyone enjoyed the beef porn!
Edited by SCVinegarPepper - 1/20/16 at 6:06am