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Failed my first brisket, tomorrow my second!

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
So i recently just purchased my first smoker and after all the prep I cooked my first brisket and pork spare ribs.

I picked up a 5.5 lb flat from the local costco. I figured about 8 or 9 hours would do it. Unfortunately the brisket was in half so I pretty much had 2 2.75 pound briskets. Well to make a long day short, after 9 hours of smoking at 225-250, the brisket was stuck at 160-170 degrees. I know everyone just says wait it out but I ran out of time and had to leave to a party. The meat was good just not very tender like previous briskets I had put through the oven.

Tomorrow Im going to give it another shot. I got another 5.5 pound flat (no packers in stock). I am also gonna try and give a 5 pound tenderloin a shot at the same time. My question is, did I do it right? Did I need to leave it in there longer? Is the mile high attitude affecting things? I want this next one to come out as good as it looks. Any input would be well appreciated.

Albuquerque, NM
post #2 of 8
Yes you need to leave it in there longer. Pay attention to your temps and don't focus on the time. I did 2 5lb flats a few weeks ago and they took almost 13 hours to get to 190 degrees. It sounds like you pulled yours when it was still stalled. Read around in the beef forum and you will find plenty of info. to make tomorrows brisket a success. The stall can take several hours but it is during that time frame that all the goodness happens to make your final product tender and juicy. It takes allot of patience but trust me, it's worth the wait. I'm sure someone more knowledgeable that me will be along shortly to enlighten you further. Good luck on tomorrows smoke.

post #3 of 8
How did you prepare the brisket ahead of time? Rub, Brine?
post #4 of 8
I didn't care for your title. Any smoke is a good smoke! You just have room for improved results. Don't give up on it. Some time spent on the SMF will do wonders for your results. Lets hear about tomorrow's perfect brisket and don't forget the QVIEW!
post #5 of 8
I have done 2 briskets now.
#1 smoked according to everything I read here, but sliced it right out of the smoker. tasted great, just tough and chewy.

#2 smoked, then placed in a cooler for 2 hours, thats the only difference, when I pulled it from the cooler to slice, it was sooooooo tender my fingers went through it.

The first time i was thinking, what difference could the cooler really make (that and it was done right before dinner time), let me tell you now, that cooler makes a world of difference, when you plan your smoke, plan 2 hours to rest in the cooler also.
post #6 of 8
Yes, the altitude can affect cooking. I'm in Rio Rancho 5500'. It takes 15 minutes to boil pasta instead of 8 - 10.

You need to foil in some liquid like apple juice or something, take it to 210' or so for a couple hours, that's called braizing and will make the meat ready to pull if that's what you want. If you want to slice it do the same only to 170' 180'.

Hope this helps, just my opinion.

Where in ABQ. are you?
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info. Its good to see a local on here! I live on the westside of town (Coors and Montano area) I will be in Rio at Haynes park tomorrow for a b-day party. I must admit, i spend way too much time at Turtle Mountain! Also, all my bicycle stuff comes from High Desert Bicycles right across the parking lot.

Everyone else-
Thanks for the input. This time I have nowhere to go. I will cook this bastard til I get my temps right! Wish me luck. Hopefully I have a Q-view to follow. I will be prepping it with a rub.

post #8 of 8
S.S. Brisket is a tough one to learn on. Thats where I started too. Not so good. My wife wasnt sure about this smokin thing. So I switched to chuck roast till I learned to master the fire. A MUCH more forgiving piece of beef in my opinion. Still very good eats. Now when I do brisket they turn out pretty much how the way I want. Keep trying.
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