Friday, May 14, 2010

Smokin' a Brisket

A few weeks back I smoked a brisket for some friends, and I'm just now getting around to writing about it. Smoking a brisket for me generally means smoking a whole lot more than just a brisket. Although I feel like I can churn out a decent slab of beef, it doesn't hurt to have a back-up (or four) just in case, and if the fires already going, you might as well take full advantage. My favorite bulletproof cut is a pork shoulder, and since it takes about the same amount of time as a whole brisket, it's convenient to smoke them together.

This batch was smoked with pecan and charcoal. The pecan came from a tree in my neighbor's yard that fell on my roof. It was a damn large limb, so it kept the smoker running all day.

The brisket was once again oversalted (by me). I really need to go lighter on that rub. It was also a bit tough because it had not gotten to temperature (190) before dinner time rolled around. I actually wrapped it the next day and slow cooked it in the oven for several hours until it tenderized a bit more, and none of the smoky flavor suffered.

Baby backs were on sale, and were perfect from the smoker. A nice bark from the sweet rub coupled with good texture and moisture gave me room for seconds.

The pork was good, but again needed more time in the smoker to tenderize a bit more. While pulling wasn't an option, the sliced pork was plenty flavorful.

I threw on a split chicken and some homemade andouille sausage for good measure. They were both excellent, and made for a much prettier plate. There was about four times the necessary amount of food, so I had plenty of leftovers. The ribs were best straight form the fridge, but the brisket and pork made some good quesadillas.

Do you have any pics of your recent smoking adventure? Send me some pics with a brief description, and I'll post them.

- BBQ Snob


Doug Zedler said...

Wish I had taken some pics of my last smoke. Although, it wasn't much to brag about. It was the first time I ever smoked a brisket that was less than 10 lbs. (it was 6.5 lbs.), and I nearly turned it to jerky. Ribs were good, though. I'll try to get one in soon and take some photos.

Blue Moon said...

So.... How many stars would you give yourself? I usually rate myself as 3, every now and then I get to 4.

BBQ Snob said...

Based on the chewy brisket, this was a three star effort...with potential.

J.M. Reimers said...

Hello, my wife and I recently moved to the Dallas area. In an effort to track down great BBQ, I found your blog and have been following for quite some time now.
I really want to start to smoke my meats and have been doing a lot of research on smokers. In looking to not spend very much money, I am considering building my own out of a 55gal drum. Is there a type of smoker that you recommend over another? Also any other tips would be much appreciated.

roland said...

I have yet to use my newish toy --- got it last year - as a smoker - I was looking at your pics and did not notice a drip pan. Is it needed? I know the Bullet style i needed one but for the firebox on the side do you think I will need one?

Meredith said...

Don't downgrade the homemade smoked andouille to a postscript in the last paragraph -- that was my favorite!


BillyBob said...

Used to have the same problems. I now (after having a discussion with the guys at Frankin's) wrap my briskett in butcher paper after it reaches around 165 degrees. I then take it to 205 and put it in a ice chest for at least an hour.
PS I make homemade andouille also and all the neighbors rave about it.

mntex said...

I also "fill my smoker" when I fire it up. If I'm going to spend 14-16 hours doing it, I might as well utilize the capacity!

Lone Star Mama said...

For everything about smoking you need to know got to
it is the best!!!

Tony said...

I noticed you said you used a tree from someone's yard? Did you dry it out first?I know using wet wood is detrimental to getting good smoky flavor. I really want to get into producing some quality smoked products.

BBQ Snob said...

Tony - The branch fell in my yard a few months back, and I dried it out in my garage.

Don O. said...

My Mrs practiced on some chicken and ribs with her bullet smoker this weekend and I was sure happy eating the results. Details and pix on my blog.


Each joint is judged on the essence of Texas 'cue...sliced brisket and pork ribs. Sausage is only considered if house made. Sauce is good, but good meat needs no adornment to satisfy. Each review can only be based on specific cuts of meat on that particular day. Finally, if the place fries up catfish or serves a caesar salad, then chances are they aren't paying enough attention to the pits, so we mostly steered clear.