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Cut a whole brisket in half?

Discussion in 'Blowing Smoke Around the Smoker.' started by sawhorseray, Sep 12, 2019 at 8:53 AM.

  1. sawhorseray

    sawhorseray Smoke Blower

    My local Sam's Club has whole prime brisket on sale at a fairly decent price, $3.58lb. I was thinking of getting one and cutting the flat from the point, freeze one for a later smoke. There's not a big enough crowd to warrant smoking a whole brisket till Xmas, and then I'll be smoking a rib roast. Is cutting the brisket in half acceptable practice? RAY
  2. krj

    krj Meat Mopper

    Nah, no big deal there. I know quite a few people who separate the flat from the point even if they are cooking both for the same cook. Plus you get more surface area which means more bark.
    siege, JC in GB and fivetricks like this.
  3. tallbm

    tallbm Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    In Texas we execute people when they are caught doing that hahahaha, Just Kidding :)

    You should be fine doing so.
    Another option would be to trim it like the following and see if that reduces the size enough for you. The trimming approach is to remove enough of the thin Flat meat so that what remains of the Flat meat is about the same uniform thickness throughout the flat (not the same thickness of the rest of the brisket). The thin flat meat just burns up or becomes very undesirable if just left on while waiting for the rest of the brisket to finish cooking.
    The green area is trimmed off.

    I've had 15-17 pound briskets where I easily trim well over 3 pounds of thin flat meat. I just roll/fold that meat up and smoke it with the rest of the brisket but you can repurpose it to do anything you want. MAYBE this approach will give you a good size chunk of flat to mess around with while still having a whole packer that will work when it comes time to smoke the whole thing.

    Do what you will but understanding this trimming approach may give you some additional options or cause more ideas to kick around for you :)
    JC in GB likes this.
  4. bregent

    bregent Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    If you have a vacuum sealer, then I would just smoke the whole thing and pack and freeze the leftovers into portion sized bags. Reheat, slice and serve or use for tacos, chili, etc.
    tallbm likes this.
  5. sawhorseray

    sawhorseray Smoke Blower

    Thanks for the feedback guys! I'm gonna go pick one up and see what I've got to work with, never done a brisket yet. I do have a Cabelas commercial vac-sealer for the sausage and bacon I make, gets a lot of use for ribeye steaks too. We just moved to AZ a couple of months ago, don't know a whole lot of folks yet so there's not much of a crowd to cook for except the DW's relatives at holiday time. Thanks again! RAY
    JC in GB likes this.
  6. sawhorseray

    sawhorseray Smoke Blower

    I got to Sam's Club and saw those whole briskets and chickened out, way more meat than I was going to have use for anytime soon. For about the same price as I was going to spend on a prime brisket I picked up three porkbutts to make sausage with, a 2-pack of pork loin ribs, and a jug of Evan Williams. I'll smoke a rack of pig ribs Sunday when the DW's cousin comes over to watch some football, freeze the other. Maybe we'll have a drink. Thanks again for the advise, I'll file it away in my head for a later date. RAY
    Smokin' in AZ likes this.
  7. tallbm

    tallbm Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Hahahaha sounds like you have a good alternative plan anyhow.
    Just an FYI, I THINK I have noticed that after finished cooking a brisket will have lost about half (or a little less) of it's size. It never seems nearly as big done as it did raw hahahaha.

    Don't get me wrong, it is still a ton of meat but it manages to disappear into thin air :)

    A 15-17 pound brisket usually doesn't last me more than 4-5 days with like 3 people initially eating on it, 1 person taking left overs, and then me eating on it for dinner each day until it is then gone :)
  8. smokerjim

    smokerjim Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    it's funny how the smell of smoking meat can attract a crowd,
  9. sawhorseray

    sawhorseray Smoke Blower

    You're sure right about that Smokerjim! I've been a BPOE member for a few years and figure to transfer over to the local Elks Lodge in Chandler or Mesa. Making and grilling up my sausage has been a great way to meet new folks over the years, something about meat that brings folks together. One day grilling at a Elks function, soon folks are over to the house for some smoked chicken and ribs. Just a great way to meet nice folks and contribute to some good causes. RAY
    DSCN0774.JPG DSCN0773.JPG
    smokerjim and Smokin' in AZ like this.
  10. smokerjim

    smokerjim Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    nice looking sausage, nice job
  11. sawhorseray

    sawhorseray Smoke Blower

    Thanks Jim! I posted kind of a sausage tutorial on this site about five years back.


    Since then I got a meat mixer that attaches to my 1hp grinder from Cabelas, makes life a lot easier. I also stopped making my own sausage seasonings after trying the 260B Italian sausage seasonings from PS Seasonings. It gave me the exact flavor I was always looking for, and it's repeatable each and every time. I'm out of wild hog meat at the moment, but aim to cure that in a couple of months when the weather cools down. Nobody can really tell the difference between the wild hog sausage or the stuff I make with straight domestic porkbutt, but it does give me a great excuse to have to go out and whack a wild pig, or two! RAY
  12. siege

    siege Smoking Fanatic

    For next time.... Remember, trim is not waste. Grind it into hamburgers, add it to smoked baked beans, sauce up for some burnt ends, or chop it up for tacos. Enjoy !