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Realtime 14th May - First Brisket - The Disaster Unfolds

gaz0001

Fire Starter
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Joined May 14, 2021
Complete disaster.
Really appreciate you guys stepping in and telling me what I've done wrong or how to recover.

4th time on the COS, first time with beef / brisket.

13th - Meat arrives.
Its not like I've seen on the Internet.
Doesn't look like a point or a flat.
I presume it's a packer cut in half, with most of the flat and some of the point. 20210513_232543.jpg 20210513_234757.jpg 20210513_234804.jpg 20210513_234816.jpg
 

gaz0001

Fire Starter
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11
Joined May 14, 2021
13th Evening -
Watched some YT videos on how to trim the meat.

My wife's Knife is not sharp.
The only sharp knife I have is a little vegatable knife.

Not quite sure how well I did with the trimming part.
(Pics with it trimmed!?) 20210514_070426.jpg 20210514_070354.jpg 20210514_070345.jpg 20210514_070342.jpg
 

gaz0001

Fire Starter
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Joined May 14, 2021
13th Evening-
I wanted to season it with equal parts Black Pepper, Kosher Sea Salt, and Granulated Garlic.

I don't have any black pepper, and the shops are shut. It's corona restrictions here.

I checked with the neighbours, but nobody has any.

Brisket is supposed to be on the BBQ by 6am and the shops don't open until 7am :-(

Put a little salt on it and left the brisket in the fridge. Hopefully this will tenderise it a little and be better than nothing
 

gaz0001

Fire Starter
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Joined May 14, 2021
14th - 5:45am

Neighbour texted me. He's got black peppercorns.
Dash over there, grab the peppercorns.

Now, I realise I don't have a grinder or a pestle and mortar.
This brisket is supposed to be on the BBQ by 6am.

My arms are wrecking, I've manually crushed 150g of salt, pepper and garlic.
Its 8am and the brisket is finally seasoned

20210514_072813.jpg 20210514_072811.jpg
 

gaz0001

Fire Starter
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11
Joined May 14, 2021
14th 8:15am

Loaded a charcoal basket and now my heat proof fabric gasket has burned and melted.

It created a bit of a chemical smell at first, but now it seems OK.

Not sure if I can use this BBQ now or not.?

Smell does seem to have gone.
20210514_080029.jpg
 

gaz0001

Fire Starter
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Joined May 14, 2021
14th 8:25am

Can't find any information about whether this melted BBQ seal is gonna be a problem.
Smell has didsapeared and BBQ at 225f.

Gonna go for it. (Really hope an expert can advise me before I kill everyone!) 20210514_084603.jpg
 

gaz0001

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Joined May 14, 2021
9:30am

Loosing control,
I have some coals on there and 1x Chunk Hickory.

I can't keep the temps under 270f without the wood stopping burning and giving off white smoke

20210514_093546.jpg
 

gaz0001

Fire Starter
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Joined May 14, 2021
10am -

After fighting with hight temps and white smoke for around 45min.

It dies down to 200f.

Just basically no large coals, a bed a tiny hot red ones. And a burned out chunk.

Thrown another chunk on there, and 3 pieces of coal.

It seems impossible to keep it at 225f.
Its either 225f with white smoke,
Or 250 to 300f with clean smoke.

Image attached on the Inkbird. It's around 250f now with clean smoke. Screenshot_20210514-100513_Inkbird Pro.jpg 20210514_100018.jpg
 

gaz0001

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Joined May 14, 2021
10:25

Ive got my intake around 9/10ths closed.
I can see there's a naked fire on the wood.

Temps are 230f.

Smoke is light white.
I think it's going OK.

Gasket update also, as you can see it's kinda hardened and sealed after the initial melt.
I do hope this is safe. 20210514_101848.jpg 20210514_101907.jpg
 

Attachments

gaz0001

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Joined May 14, 2021
It's 10:30am here in the middle east.

I have 1x probe 148f in the near end (close to firebox) and largest part of meat.
I have 1x 142f probe at far end (far from firebox) and flat part of meat.

Aside from my other problems, im still not sure what to do with this cut? Do I seperate the point part at some stage?
Should I Texas crutch it? I want to serve it in around 4 hours from now, about 2:30pm. Screenshot_20210514-102742_Inkbird Pro.jpg
 

gaz0001

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Joined May 14, 2021
12pm mid day update.

Pic attached of the meat after 3h15m cook time.

At the moment I'm keeping the temp between 225 and 270. Trying for the 250f mark but it's tough.
These cheap offsets are difficult to control.


So my point part is showing 159f,and my flat part is showing 149f.??
My probe in the flat part is essentially in the centre of the flat which is underneath the bit that they left of the point.

What should I do here? Screenshot_20210514-120027_Inkbird Pro.jpg 20210514_113551.jpg
 

Chasdev

Smoking Fanatic
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Joined Jan 18, 2020
Don't sweat it, let it run at 275, that's where Franklin cooks, half way between low and slow and hot and fast.
Temp differences between one part and another are normal, when it gets near 200 internal they will average out,
I agree you should avoid white smoke what ever it takes to do so.
I bet it came out better than your worries would have made it seem.
 

SmokingUPnorth

Smoking UPNorth
SMF Premier Member
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The white smoke might have been from cold coals. I run into that issue when I use my WSM and it’s cold outside. I’ll get white smoke until the unlit coals warm up then it goes away.
 

mcokevin

Meat Mopper
SMF Premier Member
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Joined Oct 18, 2016
Welcome to the forum - just curious where you are located? Based on the time you posted, the pics, and that you're doing this for a Friday dinner I'd guess somewhere in the Middle East?

If you started before dawn rapid ambient temp increases after sunrise and direct sunlight could really throw you for a loop. I remember how intense the sun is there.

If you're having trouble keeping temps down you probably have too much air going into the firebox, check your gaskets and the door for points of air ingress. This seems to especially be a problem on cheaper smokers.

Were you opening the firebox often? Each time you open it you're allowing in a big influx of air which will lead to more combustion.

You can try a water pan inside the cook chamber to act as a heat sink, should help even your temps out a little bit.

How'd it turn out?
 

gaz0001

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Joined May 14, 2021
6pm update
I forgot to take a photo of the finished full piece.

I never wrapped it. It took ages - 8.5hours to reach 200 internal temperature.

Took it off, left it in a cool box for 1 hour.

Taste was good, outside had a good texture. But the inside was a bit dry.
Was hoping for better.
I'm so tired. 20210514_175154~2.jpg
 

gaz0001

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Joined May 14, 2021
The white smoke might have been from cold coals. I run into that issue when I use my WSM and it’s cold outside. I’ll get white smoke until the unlit coals warm up then it goes away.
Yes, maybe.

Because I was putting 1 Chunk Wood every 1 hour and a few new coals to replenish.
Actually, I ws putting these new coal to the side of the firebox so they lit slowly.
Maybe this was a factor
 

gaz0001

Fire Starter
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Joined May 14, 2021
Welcome to the forum - just curious where you are located? Based on the time you posted, the pics, and that you're doing this for a Friday dinner I'd guess somewhere in the Middle East?

If you started before dawn rapid ambient temp increases after sunrise and direct sunlight could really throw you for a loop. I remember how intense the sun is there.

If you're having trouble keeping temps down you probably have too much air going into the firebox, check your gaskets and the door for points of air ingress. This seems to especially be a problem on cheaper smokers.

Were you opening the firebox often? Each time you open it you're allowing in a big influx of air which will lead to more combustion.

You can try a water pan inside the cook chamber to act as a heat sink, should help even your temps out a little bit.

How'd it turn out?
Yes, we're in the GCC middle east. I also didn't factor in ambient temp.
When I started it was 20c,but it peaked at 40c today.
The smoker built in temp actually reads 150f when it's sat resting in the sun. (which it was).

So my gaskets which melted at the start of the cut remained intact.
Actually they are probably better sealing after the melt

I was opening the firebox a lot. Because of the white smoke, if I open the firebox the wood immediately lights.
Basidally I had a lot of trouble adjusting the intake to keep the temps at 250f without the wood burning out.
Its like the smoker is drawn towards 275 - 300f on its very smallest intake opening that allows the wood to stay ignited.
 

smokeymose

Master of the Pit
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Joined Aug 13, 2015
My you have had a time LOL!
Looks like mostly flat with a bit of point still on it. Kind of a sloppy cut but a really nice flat.
Your trim job looks fine.
If you try to keep low temps (to me 225 is a low temp) with a fire-breather you'll go insane. Mine is comfortable
between 260 and 280 which is where I get the best TBS, so that's where I run it and everything cooks just fine.
Ambient temperature and sunny or cloudy does make a difference and it's always going to be hotter at the firebox end.
I notice your stack choke is mostly closed. Run it wide open and use your firebox intake to control!
Consider wrapping after it's through the stall and leave it wrapped to the finish. You'll have enough smoke on it by then.
I have what many consider a COS ($300 CharGriller) and I'm happy with it.
Sorry about your tribulations but that's how we learn :-)
We're spoiled over here since the shops have stayed open. Do yourself a favor and when you get a chance stock up on spices and get a stiff blade fillet knife (and a sharpener).
Well I guess I've rambled on enough! Your brisket looks good enough to eat!
Don't give up and welcome to the forum!
Dan
 

Chasdev

Smoking Fanatic
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Joined Jan 18, 2020
Was is tough and dry or falling apart and dry?
Tough is most always under cooked, falling apart is always overcooked.
Good news is that chopped brisket makes outstanding chili.
I know, I have a bunch in the freezer and it's great!
 

tallbm

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6pm update
I forgot to take a photo of the finished full piece.

I never wrapped it. It took ages - 8.5hours to reach 200 internal temperature.

Took it off, left it in a cool box for 1 hour.

Taste was good, outside had a good texture. But the inside was a bit dry.
Was hoping for better.
I'm so tired. View attachment 496281
Hi there and welcome!

Also welcome to the world of the brisket :)

When cooking brisket it is only done when it is tender. It is tender when you can stab all over with kabob skewer and it goes in like going into butter. You check for tenderness starting at 200F Internal Temp (IT).

My guess is that it was dry and a little tough not dry and falling apart. This is classic indication that it didnt go long enough.
Also know that temp probing a brisket is very DIFFICULT to get correct. I put 3 probes aiming for the thickest and centermost part of the flat muscle and go based off the lowest reading. This works like a charm.

Good news though. If you pour some bbq sauce and a little water into that pan and cover with foil and then put into the oven for a while it will finish cooking your brisket and you can shred/chop it up for the most amazing brisket you can eat so understand that you aren't defeated yet :)

One last thing. The cut they gave you looked very trimmed down.
If you attempt this again do not worry about your smoker temp as long as you aren't burning the brisket. Briskets don't care if it is 225F or 400F smoker temp as long as you aren't burning the brisket.
You were doing right to avoid the thick white smoke so keep that up.
Finally, the cut they are giving you looks mostly trimmed and I'm guessing the Flat muscle so I wouldnt mess with it at all. I would season and smoke. Flatts can be a little dry on their own so at like an internal temp of 180F-190F I would wrap in foil with a splash of water (1/4 cup at most) and then go until it is Tender and ready.
Plan so you finish 4 hours early and hopefully you just finish on time :)

I hope this info helps and again, your brisket can still be saved and turned into amazing chopped bbq brisket as I mentioned above! :)
 

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