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Medik411

Newbie
Original poster
Jan 24, 2021
4
5
Madison, NC
Planning to smoke up a 12.25lb brisket for Sunday dinner. It has been a while and looking at a few notes I've made for past attempts a question has presented itself. In past cooks, the temp of the flat was different from the point. If the temp of the point is at 195+/- the flat was at 205. The fat side was good, but the flat seemed over done. Pulled another when the flat was at 200, point was 190 and was under done. I use a pellet grill at 245. I use the grill probes then monitor when close with a Thermopen. Am I missing something or over thinking it? The brisket is a bit expensive to not have it come out just right.
 
Don’t even worry about the point. Just cook for the flat. Do not cook to temp or time. Cook to a probe tender. This means push a probe into the meat to check when done. When the probe pushed in and out with little to no resistance then it’s done, not by temp. Sometimes flats will finish at 195F IT but sometimes they finish at 210F IT. It’s a range, not a specific temp..
 
My advice. Forget temperature. Get the bark you want, and then wrap or not. Continue to cook until probe tender. You can drive yourself mad chasing even IT across the flat and point.

Yes, I believe you are over thinking it. I know because I fell in to the YouTube clicking trap of over thinking, too lol.

Just my advice.
 
Planning to smoke up a 12.25lb brisket for Sunday dinner. It has been a while and looking at a few notes I've made for past attempts a question has presented itself. In past cooks, the temp of the flat was different from the point. If the temp of the point is at 195+/- the flat was at 205. The fat side was good, but the flat seemed over done. Pulled another when the flat was at 200, point was 190 and was under done. I use a pellet grill at 245. I use the grill probes then monitor when close with a Thermopen. Am I missing something or over thinking it? The brisket is a bit expensive to not have it come out just right.
Hi there and welcome!

Like the guys say don't pull based on time or temp. The brisket is done when it is tender ALL OVER. Don't worry about the Point it will always be tender.

The best place to put your temp probe is the thickest yet center most portion of the FLAT muscle. (Like the flat around where the point covers it.)

When it is 195F-198F start testing for tenderness ALL OVER but know that the point will likely always be tender so the flat will be the last to tender up. I test by using a wooden kabob skewer and stab ALL OVER making sure I include the thickest yet center most part of the brisket where the flat is.
If not tender all over let it raise another couple of degrees and test again. Pull when tender :)

Also know that it is not easy to get the probe placement correct and is a major reason I personally find for temps to seem to be all over the place.

If a brisket is dry and tough then it is undercooked and I think that is what you have run into.
So follow these practices and you will should get a better and tender ALL OVER brisket
 
I agree with all the posts above.

However, IMHO, from your OP, the problem sounds like a lack of adequate hold or rest. If the flat is reading 190 and when you served it, it was not done, you didn't hold it or rest it long enough. A nice long hold or rest solves that problem. The longer, the better. At LEAST two hours, but I prefer to go much longer.

If you don't have time for that, then IMO, like others have said above, just concentrate on the flat and the point will take care of itself. Get the flat past 190 and preferably in the low 200s and then go by "feel" of the flat. Keep cooking until it is soft.

I think most flats come out less than ideal, even with good cooks. It's a real challenge to cook a perfect flat, which makes it kinda fun, IMO. If it was easy, everybody would be doing it. So give the flat all your attention throughout the cook. Don't under-think it. :-)

This is just my humble opinion.

Good luck
 
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I will pull when the flat is to my liking then separate the point and it can be put back on the smoker or oven if it needs some more work, its very easy to follow the fat line when cooked imo. nothing sez it has to stay together forever
 
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Now if I can just duplicate this next time….
 

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Here's some more free advice..

Switch over to "hot and fast" cooking, run at 325/350 for 6 hours with no wrap.
Best bark ever.
I like to place a digital probe in the flat under the point (as stated above) and pull to rest at around 200/204.
Carry over cooking wrapped in a warm oven or cooler for three or four hours helps tenderize.
I no longer poke holes in them over and over to test tenderness as each hole allows/causes the very juice I crave to dribble out.
 
Now if I can just duplicate this next time….
Congrats!!!

Just keep to the good core practices and don't change more than 1 maybe 2 things at any given time and you can keep repeating success and even improving :)
 
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