Piedmontese Competition Brisket

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Master of the Pit
Original poster
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Jan 13, 2015
Coatesville, IN
Robert ( tx smoker tx smoker ) turned me on to Piedmontese beef a few years ago and we have enjoyed it tremendously. Purchased this brisket towards the end of last year and I'm finally getting around to smoking it. Labeling indicates a minimum of 9 lbs so put it on the scale and it's actually 11.4 lbs. Put in the garage fridge Sunday night to start thawing and took it out to begin prep an hour ago (Friday). Guess they meant it regarding a competition brisket. This thing was basically ready to go. I did shave off a small corner end section of the flat that was thinner than the other side. In total only removed 6.8 ozs or 0.4 lbs yielding a smoke weight of 11 lbs. We always go the straight Texas route when it comes to brisket, 50/50 salt and course ground pepper. Prep is done, brisket is saran wrapped and back into the fridge until early tomorrow morning. Plan is to get up at 3am, get 'er on with the smoker set to 275º and head back to bed for a few more winks of shut-eye. Gonna run the MAK with a pellet blend plus some extra mesquite mixed in. Loose plans are for dinner around 7pm. I've smoked a fair share of briskets but this is the first Piedmontese, definitely interested to see how it comes out. Stay tuned.....

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I havent had the brisket but robert did gift me some other cuts a couple years ago. If the brisket is anything them you are in for a treat. I'm along for the ride. See ya in the morning with my coffee...

Well crappers! Y'all might want to get off this ride. Went out to setup the MAK smoker and the auger is completely stuck. Pulled everything apart and even followed MAK's video but this thing won't budge period. Nobody to blame but myself. I've had this MAK for years and always taken care of it, well at least until now. Missed putting the cover on it last time (early Feb.) and we've had an enormous amount of rain. Pellets inside the auger soaked up the moisture, stayed that way and now it's rusted on top of everything else. No friends near by to borrow a smoker. Only option is the oven. Not really looking forward to that but just throwing the brisket out seems to be a worse decision. I'm such an idiot.....
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Not certain I can get this auger dislodged. Despite my best efforts it has not budged one bit. So ticked off at myself for not following my smoker shutdown process that has worked perfectly for many years. At this point I went ahead and put the brisket in the oven this morning. Going to try and get a hold of MAK on Monday to discuss any other options they can think of.
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Not familiar with MAK at all. Shouldn't be much different than other pellet unis to remove the drive motor to directly access the auger. Helped my SiL a few time with his grill to do the same.
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Not familiar with MAK at all. Shouldn't be much different than other pellet unis to remove the drive motor to directly access the auger. Helped my SiL a few time with his grill to do the same.

Although I don't know anything about pellet poopers...Thinking this as well.. and then maybe wet the auger/pellets and see if that will loosen up the pellets ? But as I said... Don't know a thing about them ...
Man I fired into this thread with my coffee in hand ..... only to feel your pain:emoji_disappointed:

I hope you get the MAK sorted out and going but I agree, that puppy would go in the oven if needed. I've got to rebuild my Yoder. it's due heavy maintenance & a much wanted upgrade soon.

I think we're as disappointed as you. Maybe you can get the ole MAK going again.
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At this point focus on the brisket and MAK later that brisket is going to be Good!

PS if you can get the tube off put some heat on it and try to spin it after that……. If not put it in a bucket and soak for an overnight in water…..final is saturate it is WD and let soak for a day or so……. If nothing….just order a new tube and auger from MAK……
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Wasn't that happy with the brisket. When it probed tender all over the flat I pulled it and let the temp drop to 180º before wrapping tightly and then into the oven set at 150º for a 2 hour rest. Point was fine, some of flat was ok but even after the trim prep, the parts closer to the end of the flat were dry. No worries most was portioned out for chili and vac sealed. Flavor wise, not a fan but probably ok in chili with some added smoked paprika.

Regard the auger, still stuck in cement. After we get through the eclipse stuff I'll be calling MAK to see if they can come up with a solution. Note: After using my MAK for many years without a problem I've finally come across a serious design flaw. The box surrounding the motor that also houses the pellets is pop riveted in place and there is a bunch of them. No way to get directly at the motor connection to the auger. If I could, then the motor could be removed and a set of channel locks could be used to reverse rotate the auger. The irony in this is even the lower price point Traeger smokers are put together with screws and the entire motor/pellet housing can be removed for complete access to the motor and auger shaft. Definitely points to a design deficiency on MAK's part for not thinking through the worse condition of a stuck auger. To be fair though, my MAK issue is strictly my fault. The correct process is: finish smoke, open trap door and dump remaining pellets, let the machine go through its shut down in which it will continue to run for approx 20 minutes. Basically all pellets get used up so nothing left to collect moisture and turn into concrete. In my case, I got lazy and it finally bit me. If MAK can't help me, this will be a very expensive lesson.
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