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Another noobie brisket question.

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
So, I'm thinking some beef ribs and a small brisket for this weekend. I have two questions:
1-Where does everyone purchase the brisket? I see the corned beef but that would be used for pastrami correct? I would need the fresh cut and not 'treated' with any salt or what not right?

2-Say a 5lb brisket and beef ribs together, both should take roughly 6 hours. I think I should put the brisket on an hour or so before the ribs just in case. Any suggestions on that?
post #2 of 11
1- I buy my beef from the local butcher shop, but have read that Wally World is a good place to get it, there is lots of info on how to pick a good one.
2-I plan on doing about the same size brisket this weekend, and am planning on more like 8-10 hours...just in case...ya never know how long it will stall out. You can always wrap in foil and towels (I use an old feather down coat) and place in a dry cooler for a couple of hours, and would actually suggest doing that.

Good luck!
post #3 of 11
Always plan so you have TONS of time. If you think it will take 5 hours, plan on 9 or 10. Briskets can take a long time! You can always cooler it if it finishes early.

Check out this link for more info! http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/for...ad.php?t=50979

Good luck and let us know how it goes. Remember we love Qview!
post #4 of 11
As stated, temp more important than time. But for a 5lb brisket, you need to figure for about 8 hours of smoking, not 6.
post #5 of 11
^^^what they said^^^

I don't think you'll get that brisket cooked in anything less than 7 hours. And that's if you're lucky. I'd plan on 10. And don't bump the heat up thinking you'll save time.

But yes you're correct that Corned Beef Brisket is a pastrami. I've done a few of these and they are awesome. But that has to be what you're after. I just had a 4 lb.-ish Corned Beef Brisket that took around 7 hours.

Weight doesn't matter all that much. The time smoking mostly is coming from the size of the brisket's thickness. Not so much of a side-to-side and front-to-back. But that of course does matter some too. So in order for the weight to have much bearing on length of cook time it would need to be a "thinner" piece of meat. But then it'd probably just dry out anyway.

So plan for the time you'll need to do it correctly. You won't be disappointed.
post #6 of 11
you are right you never know with a brisket my son and I had a whole trimmed packer get up to temp in 7 hours a couple of weeks ago. But I have had them take much much longer. Make sure you leave yourself plenty of time. You would hate to have your geusts waiting around for it to get done.
post #7 of 11
I'd like to agree with with planning for extra time. I just did a 12lb packer (trimmed into pieces -- flat and point which were probably around 5lbs. or so each), and they hit their plateau and stayed there for 3 hours. The internal temperature actually dropped about 7 degrees during the plateau. It seemed that the brisket (perhaps because of its thinness compared to butts) arrive at the plateau faster than butts, but perhaps stay in the plateau (perhaps due to the beef tissue) longer than pork. Of course this is pure speculation, but maybe there's some truth to it.
post #8 of 11

Rule of thumb

A good rule of thumb to use is that if you don't have all day and half the night, don't bother trying a brisket.

Simple. Direct. The truth~ you have great advice from the folks above. THLIV knows from experience the hell of the dreaded plateau (!) and associated temperature drop. THE DUDE has it dead on: it is not the weight of the cut, but its mass that will determine the cooking time, and to some proportion (no one I know understands the details yet) the plateau time. Regarding plateau time, this does make intuitive sense.

My last brisket tied me up in knots so bad I refused to give it the courtesy of posting pics. I am not making this up... About a month ago I separated and trimmed a full 9.5 lb packer into point & flat, rubbed and put on heat and smoke at 5 AM. Yes, I got up at 4 to get things ready.
At t 5 PM it was in full plateau and had dropped temps 5 degrees. My temps didn't begin to rise until 7 Pm and it wasn't until 9 PM when it hit 195 degrees F. To compound the error, I had tried a new rub recipe, and over-rubbed, making it too thick. Not what I wanted at all. The taste was great and the guys at work who shared it loved it... but it was not what I wanted nor was ready for.

So. Take your time, and believe the guys above my post who share their wisdom!
post #9 of 11
>>>It seemed that the brisket (perhaps because of its thinness compared to butts) arrive at the plateau faster than butts, but perhaps stay in the plateau (perhaps due to the beef tissue) longer than pork. Of course this is pure speculation, but maybe there's some truth to it.<<<

i think you nailed it right on the head, troy!
post #10 of 11
Good advice. PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif Or all night and half the day works too. biggrin.gif

I always plan on 16 hours on the smoker for briskets at 250ish but then I only do packers and the smallest was 10.5 pounds. Can't find a flat reasonably priced around here so I figure I'll just do a big hunk o' meat and freeze the leftovers. Then I can have brisket on short notice if I want it.

I usually start around 10 pm to midnight. With the UDS I can get quite a bit of shuteye after I get it stabilized.

I plan on 9 hours on the smoker for butts again at 250ish. Most that I have done are in the 5 pound range. It seems to work out that way whether I do one or two at a time. Many posts that I have read seem to suggest that 9 hours is a good time estimate even on larger ones.

Again these are estimates at best and seem to work for me. If I am smoking for a get together, I will pad the time even more. The meat holds just fine in the cooler and it is better to finish early than having to panic as your hungry guests start looking at their watches.biggrin.gif

post #11 of 11
My first brisket is on the smoker as we speak. trimmed out it came in at around 6lbs. I fired up the smoker at 5am and on went the brisket at 6.

I told the Mrs. 2 weeks ago I would be busy all day today. Her question was, "doing what?" I simply told her, "I'll be making your mouth water so just leave me alone and watch the boy." She understood it was smoking day. After the ribs I did a few weeks back she doesn't complain. She just wants some.

I'm "planning" on about 9 hours to smoke my brisket. We will just see wht the internal temp is by that time. I'm using just a small 30" offset smoker. Temp is around 230-240 at the center, grate level. About ever 30 minutes I'll check the temp to besure it is still where it needs to be.

I bought my brisket at Homeland(grocery store). They typically have USDA Choice meats in. I thought about going to another place in town and picking up a Prime brisket. But should the worst happen I don't want to throw that much money away on my first time smoking a brisket.

Look around, call and ask. You will find out who has what, who can get what you want and who has the best price.
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