Steps for cooking a brisket
Cooking a Brisket is considered difficult. Many unskilled barbeques have turned a 41b brisket into a 41b hunk of beef. This should not be discouraging if you are looking to cook a Brisket. The feeling you get after pulling your brisket off the BBQ after 10 hours of tending to the fire is heavenly.
When it comes to a great Brisket, it is not about the fancy robs, mops, marinades or the BBQ sauce you use, but the skills required to master low and slow cooking. Scott explains how to trim, prepare and how to manage the fire while preparing your Brisket.
In this article, Scott uses a big Daddy smoker, however, the techniques used to prepare, smoke and slice the Brisket can be used if you are using a charcoal smoker converted kettle or any other smoker.
This article offers great advice on whether you are smoking your first Brisket or you have done it many times before.
1.Trimming the Brisket
A Brisket is a tough cut of meat, it requires low and slow cooking.
When selecting your Brisket to go for the marbling and with a thick fat so that the leaner part will cook almost at the same rate as the larger parts. You should use a good narrow curved boning knife to trim the Brisket. Your aim should be around 114 of fat. A cold Brisket is easier to trim and it is, therefore, advisable to trim it right after it is out of the fridge.
A thick membrane known as the deckle will not render out during cooking and needs to be cut out. Any bits that are thinner than the rest should be trimmed off as they will cook too fast and burn. One should consider where the heat will be coming from and how the Brisket will be placed on your cooking surface, the area that runs hotter should have a little more fat so as to protect the meat from burning.
2.using a rub
Most people use complicated rubs with chili powder, cumin, and paprika on their Briskets. We use Texas-style, even parts salt, and black pepper or pepper and garlic. One of the biggest mistakes that one can make is putting too much rub, you should be conservative with the rub so as not to lose the meat flavor. leave the Brisket to warm up for one hour before placing it in the oven to cook.
3. positioning your Brisket on your smoker
Place the Brisket on the smoker with the fat side up, if the heat of your smoker is coming from below, consider smoking the fat side down to prevent the muscle from too much drying out. The fattier part of the Brisket should be placed closer to the fire. Use a water pan to help keep the moisture in the cooking chamber and to avoid burning.
4.Smoking your Brisket
The standard time of smoking your Brisket is 1 hour to I hour and 15 minutes per l.b (0.45 kg) of Brisket at 120°C.however, every Brisket is different and you should closely watch on the fire and keep the temperature steady.
When the lid of the smoker is open, heat and smoke are being lost and it is going to take time to recover the lost heat. You should check your Brisket as minimal times as possible, and if it seems dry, it is advisable to use a spray bottle with some apple juice or apple cider vinegar.
Ensure you have a quality thermometer setup with dual probes to measure the smoker’s temperature and avoid too much opening of the lid.
5. fire management
You should try not to chock off the oxygen too much since it causes a “dirty fire” which can create a thick oily substance leftover by fire known as creosote. The choice of wood is essential, you should avoid green or overly cured wood. Very dry wood like post oak cured for 9 to 12 months is recommended. You should maintain an even temperature if you want a perfect Brisket.
6. Moisturizing your Brisket
The best way to retain moisture is by keeping a water pan. After the first 2-3 hours, you can start spraying your Brisket with water, apple juice, hot sauce, apple cider vinegar every 30 minutes to an hour. This will ensure that your Brisket is moist and stop it from burning. You can use a liquid mixture to mop the meat but this might cause a bunch of mess which can interfere with the bark of the Brisket.
7. Wrapping up your Brisket and dealing with the dreaded stall
By wrapping up your Brisket in foil or butcher paper, you will be in a position to retain moisture and cook faster. In case the meat is too smoky, wrapping up can help. It can also accelerate the cooking time. You can wrap your Brisket after around 4-6 hours.
8. Finishing your Brisket
When a nice bark has formed on your Brisket and it is still soft and pliable, you might need to do some wrapping up. Scott uses butcher paper to wrap the Brisket. You can also use waxed butcher paper available at Amazon online store. Place your Brisket back at a temperature of 121°C until it is done. The use of a leave-in thermometer is recommended and taking it out when it hits an internal temperature of 85°C -95°C
Slicing your Brisket
Once your Brisket is off the cooker, place it to rest for about an hour and cut it against the grain. You should, however, be careful not to scrape off the bark. We recommend the use of a 12 serrated knife or you can check out our breakdown of the best Brisket slicing knives for more informed reviews. Each slice should be cut around the thickness of a small pencil on the linear part and a big pencil on the fattier part. If the Bristle is not being served right away, leave it whole and cut it just before serving to avoid drying out. The finished brisket should be wrapped in a butter paper, in foil, and in a towel and held in a cooler for a few hours.
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