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First Brisket!!

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Howdy to all y’all,
Just wanted to say thanks, I was all set to slice up another batch of my brisket jerky this last weekend when my better half, a full blooded, born and raised Texas gal said, “Honey, you don’t need any more jerky right now, why don’t you just smoke one of them sombitches for Sunday dinner?†Well I’ve always been into making sausage, bacon, ham, smoked salmon and of course jerky, but I’d never nutted up and threw a whole brisket in the smoker before. That’s an embossing admission because I’ve been living in Texas for six years now and one of the first things the little lady bought for me when I moved here was a New Braunfels Bandera Smoker, so I suppose it was about time.
Having just bought a couple of those Sam’s whole-packer briskets everyone was wondering about a few weeks ago, and making sure that I’d picked out the most flexible “left handed†ones they had. I broke out my boning knife and proceeded to get pretty anal about the trimming. I like to work with meat but I’m sure as hell not a butcher by trade. I’m sure many of y’all can dress out a large cut like that in a few minutes, but not me. About an hour latter I had two of the cleanest hunks of meat possible and about ten pounds of trimmed fat that I wish I could figure out something to do with.
One of the briskets I decided to save for making corned beef, the other one I massaged hell out of with a Texas style rub from one of my sweetheart’s cookbooks. I let it marinate for a couple of hours while I got a nicely seasoned post oak fire going in the smoker. At about this point I figured “What the hell, why waste all this good smoke?†so I decided I’d throw in some corn, and thought I’d try a couple of those Jimmy Dean Fatties y’all rave about. And while I was at it, I’d also try that smoked cabbage with my homemade bacon, a bit of sausage, spice, and way too much butter.
The brisket had been smoking for about five hours before I added all that other stuff, and I’m not that that good at tending a stick burner for such an extra long duration either. According to my Maverick remote probe, the brisket internal temp spiked up to 175 F a bit early in the process and I had to moderate the smoker temperature by opening the door a crack. I mopped everything with a thirty-thirty-thirty mixture of apple juice, cider vinegar and black coffee every 45 minutes or so until the internal temp finally hit 190 after almost ten hours of smoker time. The cabbage was in a stainless steel bowl and a bit undone so I just covered that with another bowl and foiled up the brisket and the fatties, then stuck it all in a cooler and let it sit for the last hour it took the cabbage to finish cooking. I was working on a sauce and Texas toast in the kitchen at that point and through some stroke of good fortune everything finished up right at 5:30 pm! Dinner time y’all, and way too much food for any two people to eat, but well hell, I figured it would all save pretty well.
I gotta admit the corn was a loss, I overcooked that one, but Carolyn, bless her heart, told me the brisket was incredibly good and I had to agree, it really was a phenomenal feast. The cabbage was great, the fatties were killer, and embarrassing easy to make. I can't take much credit for those, thanks Jimmy Dean!
But that brisket took the cake, not to brag, but I'd say it was the best I ever tasted. I’m truly hooked now y’all and I doubt I could have pulled it off if I hadn’t read all y’alls tips and instructions on how it's supposed to be done. Thanks everyone, now my honey won’t mind me sitting by the fire all day after this!
post #2 of 6
Good job Jim..............next time take a few pix and let us enjoy your brisket vicariously..PDT_Armataz_01_11.gif By the way are you by any chance a Navion pilot? I am a pilot myself and those Navions were a real good aircraft.......PDT_Armataz_01_12.gif
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Howdy Harold,
Good to meet a brother aviator!
Unfortunately I no longer fly the line these days, I lost my first class for other medical reasons eight years ago and had to move from the cockpit to an office environment. I work as an Systems / Avionics Engineer for a large airline here in Houston now. (You can probably figure out which one from the location) When I changed airlines six years ago I had to move from Oregon to Texas, so I went from smoking salmon to brisket as it were.
But I also sold my beach house, the sailboat and N8874H, a 1947 North American Navion that I owned for 15 years and flew coast to coast and up to Alaska several times. I could shoot myself for that now, but the AD(s), annuals, insurance, fuel and hanger fees were getting pretty steep. As the airplane got older, the fuel got more expensive, and the regulations became more and more intrusive (and expensive) it just seamed like it was time to look for something cheaper. I fly a rented Seneca now and occasionally get some stick time on test flights, and I've managed to cage a few hours in our full motion sims here at work (which is pretty fantastic). I sure miss my old Navion though and somehow my old Handel "Navionjim" still follows me today. Wish I never had sold that airplane, but I always complained when I'd see one left abandoned on some small field, and I just knew it belonged to someone who couldn't bring them selfs to part with it even if it hadn't flown in 10 years. I didn't want to be that guy. Last I heard 74H is still flying in Napa Idaho which for some reason seem to be home to about 18 Navions at last count.
post #4 of 6
Nice work Jim, welcome to the club. Once you cook some great tasting Q it is hard to do with out. (Hint if you want some really good meat try a Tri-tip)
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
A Teri-tip you say? I remember that cut from when I lived in Oregon but haven't seen one here in Texas, I'll look for one and try that, thanks.
post #6 of 6
CAVU, Jim.........PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif
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