Sunday, September 19, 2021

I'm A Brisket Fraud

Since I use this blog to store recipes and cooking tips, I thought I'd summarize my best practices for briskets. I made one the previous night for a party the next evening. Here's what I learned.

Tip 1: Don't cook it at night. Get some sleep instead. 

By the time evening rolls around, I'm not at my best. I made one serious mistake, shown below, because I wasn't thinking and didn't take the time to review the plan. Also, briskets are notoriously unreliable with cooking times. The first breakpoint, 165 degrees, should have taken 6 or so hours to reach. This one reached it after 4. When I got up in the middle of the night to check it, I found it had gone up to 180 and I was late wrapping the thing.

Tip 2: Use this rub from Southern Living. It's awesome.

Tip 3: Use this recipe for the mechanics of cooking the brisket from Hey Grill Hey. The paper wrap for the second phase is crucial.

Tip 4: PUT THE BRISKET IN A FREAKING ALUMINUM PAN, YOU IDIOT! I didn't and so I lost all the glorious drippings. Also, the paper stuck to the bottom of the brisket after I wrapped it at 1 AM. See Tip 1, above, for why 1 AM is a stupid time to be wrapping a brisket. 

In any case, start it in a pan, wrap it in a pan, store it in a pan. It's the pan part that made me a fraud. I didn't add it until the smoking was done and when I reheated the brisket for our guests, I added some homemade beef stock to simulate the drippings.

Lies, lies, all lies! I feel so dirty!

The brisket, as carved for dinner. The reddish-pink rings make it look like a proper brisket. Hah! It wasn't. Lies!

Look, it's in a pan! There are juices!
More lies!

Here it is, the fulsome, scurvy truth. It's in the smoker with rich, nourishing juices simply running out and burning up in the fire. Horrible! Unconscionable! Inexcusable!

In all seriousness, the next time I do a brisket, I'll look it up on the 'Post and find these notes and do it right. Our guests raved about the dinner, but I knew it could have been much, much better. Oh well. Live and learn.

I hope you're having a great weekend.


Mostly Nothing said...

Brisket + smoker = burnt ends.

why are we having this conversation.

tim eisele said...

Hm. My wife just bought a substantial amount of 4H beef from the county fair, I should ask if any of it is brisket.